------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Measure Will Be On Ballot (The Eugene, Oregon, 'Register-Guard' Version Of Yesterday's News About The Oregon Medical Marijuana Act Qualifying For The November Ballot)Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 01:29:54 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US OR: Marijuana Measure Will Be On Ballot Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: William Conde Pubdate: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 Source: Register-Guard, The (OR) Section: Front Page Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.registerguard.com/ Author: HARRY ESTEVE MARIJUANA MEASURE WILL BE ON BALLOT SALEM - A proposal to allow medicinal use of marijuana in Oregon has made it onto the Nov. 3 ballot, but one that would have asked voters to restrict abortions failed to qualify, state elections officials said Friday. Also qualifying for the ballot are initiatives to make all Oregon elections vote-by-mail; to make it harder for public employee unions to collect political donations from their members; and to ensure that adopted people age 21 and older could obtain copies of their original birth certificates. A measure that would lengthen sentences for people convicted of property crimes failed to qualify in the initial round of signature counting, but it could survive a second, more thorough examination, state officials said. "I'm cautiously optimistic," said Kevin Mannix, a Salem attorney and former state legislator who is behind the tough-on-crime measure. "But I am crossing my fingers and watching just like all my other supporters." Signature counting continues at the state Capitol to determine whether several other initiatives make the ballot. The deadline for certifying ballot measures is July 17. "The first thing I want to do is to savor the moment," said Rick Bayer, a Portland-area doctor who is the chief petitioner for the initiative to legalize smoking pot for medical purposes. "This is a really great day for Oregon patients," Bayer said. "The voters of Oregon will get to decide on another important medical rights issue this fall. I'm very excited about that." The measure would allow patients with certain diseases that are either chronically painful or physically debilitating to grow and use small amounts of marijuana without threat of arrest. Smoking marijuana has proved effective at easing pain suffered by glaucoma sufferers and people with multiple sclerosis, advocates of the measure contend. It also helps some cancer patients fight the sometimes ravaging side effects of chemotherapy, and it has been known to increase the appetite of AIDS victims who otherwise suffer from what's known as "wasting" syndrome. Bayer said he expects to oversee a high-profile campaign that will include radio and TV advertising. The measure is being fought by law enforcement agencies, which see it as tough to enforce and a first step toward outright legalization of marijuana and other drugs. Validation of Bill Sizemore's anti-union measure all but guarantees a pitched political battle between organized labor and conservatives who want to nullify the growing political influence of unions. "We're already gearing up for a big campaign," said Becky Miller, Sizemore's executive assistant at Oregon Taxpayers United. "We expect it's going to be one of the big issues in the state this year." The measure also could give Sizemore some fodder for his campaign for governor. Sizemore is the Republican underdog in a race against incumbent Democrat Gov. John Kitzhaber. Kitzhaber has received strong support from unions in the past. The failure of the anti-abortion measure was expected. Sponsored by the Oregon Citizens Alliance, the measure drew only a few thousands signatures more than the 97,681 minimum necessary to qualify for the ballot. OCA chief Lon Mabon said he will ask his "hard core" supporters whether the failure should spell the end of the conservative religious group, or whether it should submit another initiative and hope to qualify for the ballot in 2000. Copyright 1998 The Register-Guard
------------------------------------------------------------------- Voters Will Get Plethora Of Ballot Picks In November ('The Oregonian' Version) Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 06:51:39 -0700 From: Paul Freedom (email@example.com) Organization: Oregon Libertarian Patriots To: Cannabis Patriots (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: CanPat - Medicinal pot, vote-by-mail and unions' political Sender: email@example.com Voters will get plethora of ballot picks in November * Medicinal pot, vote-by-mail and unions' political donations all qualify enough signatures Saturday, July 11 1998 By Jim Mayer of The Oregonian staff Oregon voters will decide in November whether to make it legal for cancer patients to smoke marijuana, allow vote-by-mail in all elections and prohibit public employee unions from raising political money from payroll deductions. State election officials said Friday that petitioners for those ballot measures and a fourth allowing adult adoptees to see their birth certificates had gathered enough signatures to qualify for the ballot. Meanwhile, an anti-abortion initiative did not collect enough signatures and an anti-crime measure appeared to be in doubt. The verification process continues for five other initiatives. The secretary of state's office has until Friday to finish the work. Signatures are checked by scientific sampling. If the first sampling indicates a proposed initiative does not qualify for the ballot, a second sampling is checked. Measure supporters need 73,261 signatures of registered voters to put a statutory change on the ballot. A proposed constitutional amendment requires 97,681 signatures. The marijuana measure is similar to medical pot laws passed last year by voters in California and Arizona. It would permit people who have been diagnosed with debilitating medical conditions to smoke marijuana. The measure would allow marijuana use for anyone suffering nausea, pain, wasting disease, seizures or muscle spasms brought on by cancer, AIDS or glaucoma. Dr. Rick Bayer, chief petitioner for the measure, Friday said qualifying for the ballot is an important step. "This is a really great day for Oregon patients," Bayer said. The measure, by coincidence, will join another one on the November ballot that will decide whether to reinstate criminal penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana. The 1997 Legislature passed that law, but those who want the law returned to the way it was -- no criminal penalties for possession of less than an ounce -- gathered enough signatures to put the issue to a vote. The anti-crime proposal, sponsored by Crime Victims United, would increase penalties for property crimes and repeat violent offenders. It failed the first of the two tests designed to verify signatures. Talena Ray, a state election official, said the measure failed using a sample of 1,000 signatures. County clerks will conduct a second test using a sample of 4,000 signatures. Measures whose signatures were still being verified include proposals to: make it harder to adopt administrative rules; reform campaign financing; ban clear-cutting; designate 15 percent of lottery proceeds for parks and salmon restoration; and require that any super majority requirement receive the same super majority. The Oregon Citizens Alliance's abortion measure would have banned the procedure in the second and third trimesters except to save the mother's life. This is the second general election in which the group opposing abortion and gay rights has failed to get an initiative on the ballot. The Oregonian's Patrick O'Neill and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Notes On The AMR Oregon Medical Marijuana Act Bill In Oregon (A List Subscriber Summarizes Key Features Of The Initiative To Be Voted On In November) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 12:08:42 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: Paul Wolf (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: notes on AMR OMMA bill in Oregon http://www.teleport.com/~omr/omr_omma_complete.html This bill is similar to the other AMR bills in CO, ME, etc. Quickly reading the act, here's what I saw: - an id card registry (card must be reapplied for annually) - caregiver must be a single individual, no legal distribution system is mentioned - physician must have explained risks of marijuana for card to be valid (provides a way for cops to sting doctors) - marijuana cannot be sold from one registered patient to another - amount limit = one ounce (the Dan Lungren limit) - plant limit = 3 flowering, 4 not flowering - affirmative defense & choice of evils defense allowed - protects cardholders against forfeiture, but DA decides if he will return seized mj to patient. Seized property (like a house) cannot be harmed or forfeited, but this section does not actually say that it has to be returned to the patient, or how quickly it should be returned. - protects physicians from Oregon "Board or Medical Examiners" only if they discussed the risks of mj to patient ("Board" and "Medical Examiners" are not defined in the act. Neither is "Board of Medical Examiners" defined anywhere. If this is a typo in the act, the section is invalid. Luckily, AMR took CO-HIP's advice and included a sevarability clause (#18). Perhaps it is only a mistake on the webpage. - local & state law enforcement specifically granted the right to scrutinize the registry. - medical insurance companies do not have to pay for marijuana treatments
------------------------------------------------------------------- In Death, A Neighborhood Finds New Life ('The Oregonian' Reinforces The Mean-Spirited Neighbors Of An Elderly Portland Woman Who Assume Now That She's Dead The Problems Engendered By Drug Prohibition And The Alleged Trafficking At Her House Will Disappear) The Oregonian letters to editor: firstname.lastname@example.org 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Web: http://www.oregonlive.com/ In death, a neighborhood finds new life * A Portland woman's will directed that her home, which police say her sons used as a drug house, should be sold upon her death Saturday, July 11 1998 By Dionne D. Peeples of The Oregonian staff An elderly woman's dying wish may be a Portland neighborhood's blessing. Eighty-five-year-old Elnora Young died in May, and her last wish was that relatives sell the place that she had called home for 24 years -- and that police and neighbors have called a dope house for at least five. Law enforcement officials helped Young's wish come true. Friday evening, neighbors watched and took photographs as police boarded up and padlocked the five-bedroom home at 4715 N.E. Mallory Ave. "I feel relieved," said James I. Kent, 30, who lives next door. "I feel like we can breathe again." Police credit neighbors' persistence in calling police and documenting the problems that led the city to shut down the house. Young knew about the drug dealing, police say, but did not demand that her family members stop doing it. "It was blatant activity . . . like hand-to-hand contact and conversations that could be heard about the size or amount of the rock (of crack cocaine)," said Officer Marci Jackson of the Portland Police Bureau's Neighborhood Response Team. Officers had planned to evict Young for one year according to the city's specified crime property ordinance, but she died May 28. The ordinance says it is unlawful for a structure to be used as a crime property. Police planned to go ahead with the eviction of her relatives, but Young's will stated that the dilapidated house should be sold. Although it wasn't her primary intent, the sale gave police and neighbors a permanent reprieve from the problem property. "It has taken four years of documented effort," said Elizabeth Kent, 40, as her three children gathered around her. "They started with a heroin trade that turned into a crack trade." It grew so bad, the Kents said, that they built an 8-foot fence in 1996 to keep hypodermic needles and other drug paraphernalia out of the back yard. Neighbors are thrilled that they can reclaim Mallory Avenue, between Northeast Going and Wygant streets, citing problems that date to 1993, when the Neighborhood Response Team began receiving complaints about: • A place where people urinated out of a top-floor window. • A place where prostitutes had sex in neighbors' yards. • A place where people going in the home for seconds or minutes at a time cursed and showed no respect to neighbors. The Kents, with police help, formed the Mallory Avenue Block Watch in 1994 after teen-agers at Young's house had chased Elizabeth Kent onto her porch when she confronted them after a car accident. >From January 1994 to March 1995, residents called the Portland police hot line for drug-house complaints 20 times, which is a lot, Jackson said. By December 1996, police had enough information from neighbors and their own investigation to close Young's home. The city sent her a letter saying it could evict her for a year if the drug dealing did not end. Young got restraining orders against her sons and grandsons, barring them from the property, and that was enough to satisfy police and neighbors that the problem was fixed. But within weeks, the sons returned, and so did the drug deals. "Generally speaking, you don't want to evict people, and most cases result in compromise," said Lt. Rod Beard of Northeast Precinct. "In this case, it didn't happen." But the neighbors didn't give up. For two more years they continued to document activity and call police about the comings and goings at the home, pressing officials to do something. Cmdr. Derrick Foxworth of Northeast Precinct credits the Kents with holding police and other city departments accountable. "They kept our feet to the fire," he said. Police receive hundreds of complaints on about 200 residences where neighbors suspect drug or gang activity, Foxworth said. He said police usually are successful in resolving the complaints in cases of rental property because they can get the landlords to evict problem tenants, but in owner-occupied homes it becomes more difficult. A week before Young died of heart failure, an informant bought drugs at the home, and police decided they again had enough evidence to close it. Multnomah County Circuit Judge Roosevelt Robinson on June 19 ordered that Young's family leave the house by 5 p.m. Friday and that the home, which she willed to her son, Nathaniel, be sold as she had requested. Six of Young's children and grandchildren learned of the decision June 24, and now only a Realtor and interested buyers will be permitted inside, Jackson said. Meanwhile, the Kent children eagerly pedaled their bright-colored bicycles up and down the street where dealers had once fought over drugs. The three boys, ages 5, 6, and 7, hadn't been allowed to play outside in the evenings while the drug house was in operation. Their parents and others in the neighborhood plan a block party next week to celebrate. "I want to encourage other neighbors to fight back," James Kent said. "If you let someone else handle your neighborhood problems, a lot of bad things can happen before good things can happen." Dionne D. Peeples covers crime issues for The Oregonian's Crime, team. She can be reached by phone at 221-8269, by e-mail at email@example.com or by mail at 1320 S.W. Broadway, Portland, Ore. 97201.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Secret Tobacco Documents Unsealed ('The Seattle Times' Says The King County, Washington Judge Presiding Over State Attorney General Christine Gregoire's Lawsuit Against The Tobacco Industry Has Unsealed Two Previously Secret Tobacco Industry Documents And Ruled That They Constitute Evidence Of An Antitrust Conspiracy By Cigarette Manufacturers) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 13:06:49 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US WA: Secret Tobacco Documents Unsealed Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: John Smith Pubdate: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 Source: Seattle Times (WA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.seattletimes.com/ Author: James V. Grimaldi, Seattle Times Washington bureau SECRET TOBACCO DOCUMENTS UNSEALED A King County judge unsealed two previously secret tobacco-industry documents this week and then declared they were evidence of an antitrust conspiracy by cigarette companies to limit competitors' claims of health benefits in cigarette advertising. The records, which were found as part of state Attorney General Christine Gregoire's lawsuit against the tobacco industry, reveal how cigarette companies developed a written advertising code - one the state alleges was part of a conspiracy to create doubt about the health hazards of smoking. The ruling by Superior Court Judge George Finkle potentially strengthens the state's case as it enters a week of hearings on whether the antitrust lawsuit should be dismissed or go to trial in nine weeks. John Phillips, Philip Morris' Seattle attorney, said the judge's ruling was disappointing and poses a challenge. Even so, Phillips said, tobacco companies will argue Monday that the antitrust, conspiracy, restitution and other claims in the state's case should be dismissed for lack of evidence. "Where we disagree with the judge is whether those particular documents evidence any such fraud being perpetrated," Phillips said. Antitrust laws forbid companies from getting together to limit advertising or to advertise in a certain way and, therefore, these documents "certainly sound incriminating," said Herb Hovenkamp, a University of Iowa antitrust-law expert. Next week's hearings come as Gregoire and 36 other states finish two weeks of negotiations with tobacco companies over a potential $196 billion settlement of their fraud and antitrust lawsuits. The states are seeking to recoup lost Medicaid payments to sick smokers. Settlement talks are on hold while Gregoire meets today with attorneys general to discuss the potential settlement, which could mean for Washington state $143 million a year in perpetuity - about $3.57 billion over 25 years. One of the memos at issue in Finkle's ruling this week includes minutes from a Dec. 3, 1964, meeting of attorneys for the major tobacco companies - R.J. Reynolds, American Tobacco, Liggett & Myers, Philip Morris, Brown & Williamson and Lorillard. "The memorandum," Finkle said, "provides prima facie evidence that defendants conspired to limit health-based advertising and that it was written in furtherance of such conspiracy." In that 1964 meeting at the Tobacco Institute, the attorneys held a heated discussion over whether Kent cigarettes could be permitted to refer to a special filter device called Micronite. The memo outlines how companies discussed a compromise offered by Kent maker Lorillard to remove the words "filter" from the front and back of cigarette packages and place a statement on the side: "Made by the Micronite Process, a name used to describe Kent's method of filter construction." The second memo outlines a meeting with members of the Federal Trade Commission in April 1964 in which tobacco-industry attorneys argued that the industry's cigarette-advertising code should eliminate the need for the FTC to require the industry to put warnings on cigarette packs. FTC officials told tobacco-industry attorneys that the advertising code raised serious antitrust problems that could bar an advertiser from "making a truthful, nondeceptive representation about his brand." Finkle ruled that the memo "is prima facie evidence of the state's allegation that defendants conspired to limit health-based advertising by creating a code of conduct that condoned, if not required, such limitations." James V. Grimaldi's phone message number is 206-464-8550. His e-mail address is: email@example.com
------------------------------------------------------------------- Officers Cleared Of Infringing On First Amendment Rights ('The Las Vegas Sun' Says The Las Vegas Police Internal Affairs Bureau Has Cleared Two Cops Accused Of Violating The First Amendment Rights Of Petitioners Gathering Signatures For A Medical Marijuana Ballot Initiative - 'This Was A Sham,' Said Gary Peck, Executive Director Of The ACLU Of Nevada)Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 14:11:35 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US NV: Officers Cleared Of Infringing On First Amendment Rights 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: Las Vegas Sun (NV) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.lasvegassun.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 OFFICERS CLEARED OF INFRINGING ON FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS LAS VEGAS (AP) - Two Las Vegas police officers accused of infringing on the First Amendment rights of a group of Fremont Street petitioners have been cleared of any wrongdoing. The police Internal Affairs Bureau's action infuriated an American Civil Liberties Union official who said the investigation was slanted in favor of the officers and disregarded the most serious allegations. "This was a sham," said Gary Peck, executive director of the ACLU of Nevada, after Friday's announcement. "The results of this investigation are yet another example that too often Metro's (Internal Affairs Bureau) is more interested in protecting their officers instead of finding out what really happened and ensuring police do their job." On May 22, five people attempting to gain signatures on a petition to force a statewide vote on the medicinal use of marijuana were ordered off the street by security guards working for the Fremont Street Experience. Police called to the scene detained the petitioners for an hour while their backgrounds were checked. One petitioner, Amy Donaldson, claimed an officer wrenched her wrist and took her pen away when she attempted to write down the officers' names and badge numbers. The group, with the assistance of the ACLU, subsequently filed complaints with internal affairs. Police Lt. Rick Alba said Friday the two officers, whom he declined to identify, were cleared of any wrongdoing. The officers, assigned to the Downtown Area Command, were both accused of discourtesy and one was also accused of using excessive force. But Peck said police bungled the investigation by ignoring the fact that the officers had no right to detain the petitioners and that they also threatened the group with arrest if they ever returned to Fremont Street.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Police Anger ACLU ('The Las Vegas Review-Journal' Version) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 13:18:48 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US NV: Police Anger ACLU 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: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal (NV) Contact: email@example.com Fax: 702-383-4676 Website: http://www.lvrj.com/lvrj_home/ Author: Glenn Puit Review-Journal POLICE ANGER ACLU The Internal Affairs Bureau clears two officers of infringing on the rights of downtown petitioners. Two Las Vegas police officers accused of infringing on the First Amendment rights of a group of Fremont Street petitioners have been cleared of any wrongdoing. The police Internal Affairs Bureau's action infuriated an American Civil Liberties Union official who said the investigation was slanted in favor of the officers and disregarded the most serious allegations. "This was a sham," said Gary Peck, executive director of the ACLU of Nevada, after Friday's announcement. "The results of this investigation are yet another example that too often Metro's (Internal Affairs Bureau) is more interested in protecting their officers instead of finding out what really happened and ensuring police do their job." On May 22, five people attempting to gain signatures on a petition to force a statewide vote on the medicinal use of marijuana were ordered off the street by security guards working for the Fremont Street Experience. Police called to the scene detained the petitioners for an hour while their backgrounds were checked. One petitioner, Amy Donaldson, claimed an officer wrenched her wrist and took her pen away when she attempted to write down the officers' names and badge numbers. The group, with the assistance of the ACLU, subsequently filed complaints with internal affairs. Police Lt. Rick Alba said Friday the two officers, whom he declined to identify, were cleared of any wrongdoing. The officers, assigned to the Downtown Area Command, were both accused of discourtesy and one was also accused of using excessive force. "It was felt that they acted appropriately," Alba said. "What occurred was proper and under the guidelines of Metro policy and the law." But Peck said police bungled the investigation by ignoring the fact that the officers had no right to detain the petitioners and that they also threatened the group with arrest if they ever returned to Fremont Street. The disposition from the internal investigation did not address either claim. Police Lt. Larry Spinosa, who heads internal affairs, did not return calls seeking comment. Peck said police did not take into account that the five witness statements contradicted the officers' accounts. He also contends the officers refused to offer their badge numbers and names until ordered to do so by a supervising officer who arrived at the scene after the controversy erupted. "According to all five witness statements, the cops had an attitude from the get-go," Peck said. "They were saying 'You people are not going anywhere and we have the right to stop anybody for any reason.' " "The thing most disturbing about what has transpired is that Metro has now changed its story and so have the security guards," Peck said. "Initially these people who were accosted were accused of violating city law by soliciting out on Fremont Street. Now, once Metro has obtained a better understanding of the city ordinance, they say they were called to the scene because these petitioners were acting up." City law prevents people from begging, soliciting financial contributions or other valuables. There is no mention in the ordinance of any ban against handing out leaflets or asking for signatures. Although enough signatures have been obtained in 11 counties -- including Clark County -- to put the marijuana proposal on the statewide ballot, it appeared that the effort may fail because the signature drive is falling short in Nye County. Under the proposal, a patient could use, upon the advice of a physician, marijuana for "treatment or alleviation" of cancer, glaucoma, AIDS, persistent nausea, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and other medical problems. The ability of people to freely express their opinions on Fremont Street has been at the center of an ongoing fight between the ACLU, the Fremont Street Experience and the city of Las Vegas. In October the ACLU filed suit against the city, arguing a 1995 ordinance creating the pedestrian mall and giving downtown casinos broad control over the area was unconstitutional. A decision by a U.S. District Court judge essentially ruled that the Fremont Street Experience is not open to all types of free speech, even though public monies were used to convert the area into a mall.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Hemp, Marijuana Focus Of Beach Event ('The Jacksonville Times Union' Covers The Jacksonville Beach, Florida, Hempfest Yesterday) Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 12:19:20 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US FL: Hemp, Marijuana Focus Of Beach Event 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: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 Source: Jacksonville Times Union Contact: http://www.Jacksonville.com/aboutus/letters_to_editor.html Website: http://www.Jacksonville.com/ Author: Derek L. Kinner Times-Union staff writer HEMP, MARIJUANA FOCUS OF BEACH EVENT JACKSONVILLE BEACH - David Tillman shuffled through the crowd of hundreds at yesterday's Hempfest, his eyes covered by dark sunglasses, using a cane to guide himself. As a band screamed out hard rock songs, and sunbathers enjoyed the beach a hundred yards away, Tillman approached Hempfest organizers asking how he could apply for a permit to use marijuana for medicinal purposes. Tillman said he is blind in one eye and has nearly lost sight in the other. He suffers from glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy, both of which have left him almost sightless. Marijuana is the one thing he thinks could save his sight. ''It drops my sugar levels 25 to 50 points, depending on the potency of it,'' Tillman said. ''I would've saved my sight before, but I couldn't get enough of it.'' The use of industrial hemp, an extremely low-potency form of marijuana, was the main issue of the day yesterday. Hemp can be used to make products such as rope, paper, even massage oil. Event organizers also were lobbying for the legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes, having visitors fill out voter registration forms to get them active in politics. Police reported eight arrests, seven for smoking marijuana and one for selling drug paraphernalia. Two of those arrested are juveniles. Jacksonville Beach's event was one of many across the country each year aimed at trying to have the growing of hemp made legal in the United States. While it is legal to use the product to make materials, it is illegal to grow it. All hemp used for manufacturing in the United States must be imported. ''You can use it as a material to supply the world with . . . paper, fiber, food, medicine, clothing, just about everything,'' said James Dawson of Gainesville, one of the organizers. Wendy Marcum, assistant manager of The Body Shop skin and hair care store at The Avenues mall, had a small table set up with hemp soap, elbow grease and massage oil. She said hemp can be used in more than 25,000 products. While her company supports the legalization of industrial hemp growing in the United States, she said she wasn't at the festival to support the legalization of high-potency marijuana. ''Absolutely not,'' Marcum said. ''Industrial hemp is something that can save the environment.'' At least one person at the festival didn't agree with the message, especially the legalization of marijuana. ''My thoughts are, I came out here to show Jesus's love, that there is another way,'' said Susann St. Christopher of Atlantic Beach. ''We've got a lot of confused and lost souls out here.'' ''Jesus didn't die so you could smoke hemp,'' St. Christopher said. ''If you get high on living with Jesus you don't need to get high.'' Jacksonville Beach police Officer Richard Egger said the crowd was orderly. Police would ''act appropriately'' if they saw anyone smoking marijuana, he said, declining to elaborate. At festivals elsewhere, people have smoked pot in the open to make their point that it should be legalized, but organizers urged participants yesterday to refrain from illegal activity. ''I think this is just really a small event and the people have a right to be here,'' Jacksonville Beach City Manager George Forbes said. ''I really think most people came to go to the beach.'' Festival organizers went to court to get restrictions on such events eased. They said the city's ordinances saddled them with unreasonable financial requirements and dictated the content. Times-Union staff writer Kathleen Sweeney contributed to this report.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Hemp Group Clouded Rights Issue ('Jacksonville Times Union' Columnist Ronda Steinke-McDonald Blames The Cannabis Action Network For Having To Go To Federal Court In Order To Put On The Jacksonville Beach, Florida, Hempfest, But Speaks Pretty Favorably About What She Learned At www.cannabis.com)Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 13:16:17 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US FL: OPED: Hemp Group Clouded Rights Issue Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Pubdate: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 Source: Jacksonville Times Union Contact: http://www.Jacksonville.com/aboutus/letters_to_editor.html Website: http://www.Jacksonville.com/ Author: Ronda Steinke-McDonald, Columnist HEMP GROUP CLOUDED RIGHTS ISSUE The Fourth of July came and went this year without the corresponding bang of fireworks. For some people it just wasn't the same. For anyone feeling the day was too flat, it is time for a lesson on perspective. For many people Independence Day is just a picnic and pyrotechnics, maybe even a parade depending on where you live. Reflecting on the issues of liberty and the price paid by patriots to birth our nation seems too sentimental to some. This weekend at the SeaWalk Pavilion there is evidence of how radical our Constitution and the Bill of Rights remain. The Hempfest, coordinated by the Cannabis Action Network (CAN), arrives in Jacksonville Beach today via a judicial ruling on the group's First Amendment right to assemble and exercise its freedom of speech. Although no one in Jacksonville Beach's city government sought to persecute this group, the leaders of CAN employed their typical tactics. With a large chip on their shoulder, they rushed to the media wailing about the abridgment of their constitutional rights. Well, it just didn't happen like that. They wanted to hold a festival. Before applying for a special events permit, or working through things in any fashion at the lower levels, CAN was having its day in court. The judge issued a 15-page legal opinion that included a disturbing message for those charged with running a city: Any group can exercise its right to assemble in your town, whenever it wants, and even if you fear that rioting and mayhem may follow, you must tolerate the gathering of even the most intolerant groups. CAN is a body of believers for a repeal of the laws prohibiting the growth of hemp, whose by-product is marijuana. The group also advocates the medical use of marijuana. Many people will automatically dismiss CAN's battle cry regarding hemp as a cloak concealing its real purpose: the legalization of recreational drug use. In educating myself on the topic on the Internet, I passed many underground Web sites. I sympathetically passed the Marijuana Anonymous site that seeks to help the thousands who wrestle to break their addiction to the drug. My final destination was www.cannabis.com. This 10-page site offered solid information that revealed some economically based hypocrisy on the part of our government regarding the prohibition of growing hemp. One interesting inclusion is a Popular Mechanics article written in 1938, a year before the hemp prohibition went into effect. It reveals the incredible agricultural benefits of hemp in land reclamation and notes the amazing economical opportunities of this sturdy plant. It is possible that the prohibition of hemp in the 1930s occurred because it would have replaced other cash crops, like cotton, and could have put a dent in the timber industry's profits because a hemp by-product can be substituted for wood pulp in paper. This site was a good source of political, economical and medical information on this complex issue. Today is a good day to witness the exercise of free speech in the pavilion. You can exercise your view on the subject by adding your name to the numerous petitions CAN will be promoting or by avoiding the site if you are not in favor of the cause. Hopefully, before any of us exercises our right to free speech, we will all keep America strong by having an open mind and an educated opinion. The blood of our patriot forefathers is at least worth that much effort. Ronda Steinke-McDonald is a free-lance writer who lives in Jacksonville Beach.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Chemical Tapped To Fight Strokes (The 'Science News' Version Of Recent News About Researchers At The US National Institute For Mental Health Discovering That Cannabidiol, An Active Component Of Marijuana, They Think Could One Day Be Used Routinely As An Antioxidant To Prevent Brain Damage Due To Strokes, Neurodegenerative Diseases, And Heart Attacks) From: "Peter McWilliams" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "Peter McWilliams" (email@example.com Subject: DPFCA: Medical marijuana may prevent strokes, heart disease, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's. Date: Wed, 15 Jul 1998 10:14:25 +0100 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: DrugSense http://www.drugsense.org/dpfca/ Science News, July 11, 1998 Marijuana chemical tapped to fight strokes By J. Brainard The breakfast table may someday feature not only orange juice and vitamins but also a more exotic health booster-a compound extracted from marijuana. Cannabis contains a chemical that can protect cells by acting as an antioxidant, a new study shows. More effective than vitamins C or E, it offers an appealing option for the treatment and perhaps prevention of stroke, neurodegenerative diseases, and heart attacks, the researchers suggest. However, there's no worry that those who take it will become too stoned to read the morning paper. The compound, called cannabidiol, doesn't make people high. Scientists have yet to test whether the chemical has a protective effect in people. In test-tube experiments, researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Md., exposed rat nerve cells to a toxin that is typically released during strokes. Cannabidiol reduces the extent of damage, the scientists report in the July 7 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In follow-up studies, the researchers induced strokes in rats and treated them with cannabidiol. Those experiments are not yet complete, but "we're getting some good results," says Aidan J. Hampson, a neuropharmacologist at NIH. Researchers suspect that many antioxidants can reduce the severity of ischemic strokes, in which blood vessels in the brain become blocked. During ischemic strokes, which make up 80 percent of all strokes, a toxin initiates the release of reactive oxygen molecules called free radicals into the bloodstream. These harmful molecules are under suspicion as one of the agents that cause stroke damage, such as paralysis and loss of speech and vision. Antioxidants such as cannabidiol neutralize free radicals and so might limit the damage. The NIH researchers had suspected that the group of molecules including tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the marijuana ingredient that produces a high, would act as antioxidants. In their study, THC and cannabidiol provided equal defense against cell damage. An earlier study at the University of Arizona in Tucson turned up no side effects of cannabidiol in people given large doses. A pharmaceutical company, Pharmos in Rehovot, Israel, is already conducting human clinical trials using a synthetic marijuana derivative, Dexanabinol, to treat damage from strokes and brain injury. Like cannabidiol, this compound is an antioxidant and does not produce euphoria. "This is a promising area [of research] . . . particularly because we have so few effective means of treating stroke," said JoAnn E. Manson, a researcher in preventive medicine at Harvard Medical School. Stroke is the third leading killer in the United States (SN: 12/21&28/96, p. 388). The NIH researchers don't anticipate using cannabidiol to treat hemorrhagic stroke, characterized by bleeding within the brain, Hampson says. Antioxidants, however, could help treat other diseases that appear to be caused in part by free radicals. These include heart disease and two neurodegenerative disorders, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. From Science News, Vol. 154, No. 2, July 11, 1998, p. 20. Copyright (c) 1998 by Science Service. References: Hampson, A.J., et al. 1998. Cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol are neuroprotective antioxidants. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 95(July 7):8268. Further Readings: Lipkin, R. 1994. Protecting nerve cells after injury. Science News 146(Sept. 3):157. Raloff, J. 1996. Antioxidants: Confirming a heart-y role. Science News 150(July 6):6. Seachrist, L. 1995. Widely used drug prevents stroke. Science News 148(Sept. 16):183 Sternberg, S. 1996. Bold aim in stroke: Spare the brain. Science News 150(Dec. 21):388. Sources: Aidan J. Hampson National Institutes of Health National Institute of Mental Health Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Regulation Bethesda, MD 20892 JoAnn E. Manson Harvard Medical School 181 Longwood Avenue, Room 333 Boston, MA 02115
------------------------------------------------------------------- National Institute Of Justice Statistics (A List Subscriber Notes The Federal Government Has Released Its Annual Survey Of Drug Prevalence In The Urine Of Arrestees - URL Included) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 08:44:52 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: GDaurer@aol.com Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: (GDaurer@aol.com) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: NIJ stats The National Institute of Justice has spit out, once again, its survey of the prevalence of drugs in the urine of arrestees. There's several press releases today on PR Newswire focusing individually on cities like San Jose, Denver, Dallas, D.C., Birmingham, Houston and Detroit. http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/nij
------------------------------------------------------------------- World Cup Sponsors (A List Subscriber Notes The Sponsors Of The US Broadcast Of The International Soccer Tournament Include Both Budweiser Beer And The White House Office Of National Drug Control Policy, The Drug Czar's Office) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 17:46:01 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: World Cup Sponsors The World Cup was brought to you today by Nike, The Office of National Drug Control Policy and BUDWEISER. Dang, maybe the Budweiser frogs could do some anti-drug spots. Alan B.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Clinton, Gingrich Drug Plan Hits The Air ('The Los Angeles Times' Says That, In A Rare Meeting Of The Minds, President Clinton And House Speaker Newt Gingrich On Thursday Jointly Launched An Unprecedented $2 Billion, Five-Year Nationwide Media Campaign To Discourage Teenagers From Using 'Drugs' - Announced in Atlanta, The Campaign Will Purchase Advertising In 75 Morning Newspapers And All Four Networks) Date: Fri, 10 Jul 1998 14:28:49 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Clinton, Gingrich Drug Plan Hits The Air Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Paul Lewin Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Pubdate: Fri, 11 Jul 1998 Author: Elizabeth Shogren CLINTON, GINGRICH DRUG PLAN HITS THE AIR Media: $2-billion nationwide ad campaign will try to persuade teenagers to forgo narcotics. GOP senator calls it 'dangerously weak.' WASHINGTON - In a rare meeting of the minds, President Clinton and House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) on Thursday jointly launched an unprecedented nationwide media campaign to discourage teenagers from using drugs. Announced in Atlanta, the campaign--which began with advertisements in 75 morning newspapers and spots on all four networks Thursday night--is budgeted at $2 billion over five years. Though the bulk of the effort will focus on television, ads produced free by some of Madison Avenue's premiere agencies also will run on the radio, billboards and the Internet. But some drug policy experts challenged the campaign's effectiveness. "There's remarkably little evidence that it will work," said Ethan Nadelmann, director of the Lindesmith Center Drug Policy Research Institute in New York. "If we're going to spend billions of dollars, let's spend it on things that will make more of a difference." Nadelmann argued that providing drug treatment and alternate activities for youngsters would be a more savvy, if less flashy, approach. Lawrence Wallack, a professor of public health at UC Berkeley, termed the campaign "kind of like agreeing on the least common denominator and saying, because we agree on it, therefore it is a good thing. It's the kind of strategy that makes everyone feel like something is being done on the problem. . . . Everybody is happy, but it is just not sufficient to have an impact on the problem." Wallack--who advocates more mentoring programs and activities to help teenagers deal with a wide array of public health problems, from drugs to early pregnancies--agreed that the campaign will increase awareness of the drug problem. This is a good first step, he said, but it is not a solution. He also criticized the effort for not targeting cigarette and alcohol use among teens. The antidrug media campaign has been underway since January in 12 pilot cities in response to concern over the steady increase of drug use by youths in recent years. One shows a girl wielding a frying pan--wildly smashing it into things and then pausing to tell the audience that is what drugs do to your brain. Another pictures a child recounting her mother's warnings not to play with matches. But, asked whether her mother warned her about drugs, she says nothing. "These ads are designed to knock America upside the head and get America's attention," Clinton said in Atlanta, where he was joined by Gingrich. Drawing on his personal experience, Clinton referred to the drug problems that once plagued his half-brother, Roger Clinton, and stressed that the message of the ads is for everyone. "My brother nearly died from a cocaine habit, and I've asked myself a thousand times: What kind of fool was I that I did not know that this was going on?" the president said. "How did this happen that I didn't see this coming and didn't stop it?" And he added: "Nobody in America is free of this--not the president, not any community, any school, any church, any neighborhood." The advertising blitz, crafted by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy in conjunction with the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, will be funded half through federal dollars and half through donated air time and advertising space from media outlets. Although Congress so far has allocated funds only for the first year of the project, Gingrich said the rest of the money will be found. "We are all trying to reach out to every young American and say: Don't do it," Gingrich said. Although public health advocates suggested that the campaign's funds would be better invested in programs targeting teenagers, some congressional Republicans said the money should be spent on more aggressive interdiction of drugs. Sen. Paul Coverdell (R-Ga.) attacked the ad campaign as "inexcusably and dangerously weak." "By slashing budgets for interdiction and border protection, this president has rendered our nation unable to fight--let alone win--this terrible drug war," Coverdell said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- White House Unveils Anti-Drug Ad Blitz ('The Associated Press' Version In 'USA Today') Date: Fri, 10 Jul 1998 11:31:00 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: White House Unveils Anti-Drug Ad Blitz Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Paul Lewin Pubdate: Fri, 11 Jul 1998 Source: USA Today (US) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nfront.htm Author: Associated Press WHITE HOUSE UNVEILS ANTI-DRUG AD BLITZ ATLANTA - Remember that old fried egg ad with its warning, "This is your brain on drugs"? It's going big time this year, with the federal government spending $195 million - rivaling the advertising campaigns of American Express, Nike or Sprint - to plaster the airwaves with anti-drug messages. The ad campaign, a five-year project being given a bipartisan send-off Thursday in Atlanta by President Clinton and House Speaker Newt Gingrich, could turn into a $1 billion government investment in stopping teen drug use. "This is an effort to talk to a generation that started to get the wrong message, "said retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey, who heads Clinton's drug control policy office. In a 1997 national survey, half of high school seniors and nearly one-third of eighth-graders reported using illegal drugs at least once. Thursday's unveiling promised a brief cease-fire in the sharp election-year squabbling between Clinton and Republican leaders on everything from drugs to foreign policy. Gingrich, R-Ga., who rearranged his schedule to be at the president's side on his own Atlanta turf, said congressional Republicans were committed to funding the campaign for its full five-year run. "It's important first of all to send a signal to young people that whether you're a Republican or a Democrat, you're committed to getting across the message that drugs are dangerous. This is a national message, not a political message," the speaker said in an interview Wednesday. "The level of support among Republicans in the Congress is strong and growing. ... We want to break the back of the drug culture over the next five years," he said. Politics would be on only a temporary hold. From Thursday's ceremonies in the Georgia World Congress Center, Gingrich was headed to a Republican fund-raiser in New York, Clinton to Democratic events in Atlanta and Miami that would raise $1.3 million for the effort to oust the GOP from control of Congress. The president also was stopping in Daytona Beach, Fla., to meet with those who have been fighting the state's raging wildfires. Beginning Thursday in 75 major newspapers and on the four major TV networks tonight, parents and a target youth audience between the ages of 9 and 18 will be bombarded by provocative anti-drug ads produced gratis by some of Madison Avenue's premiere ad agencies. The goal is to hit the average family least four times a week either through TV, radio, newspapers, billboards or the Internet. One of the spots is a spin-off of the fried egg ad popularized during the Partnership for a Drug-Free America's 11-year campaign, with its Reagan-era slogan "Just Say No." The updated version, meant to dramatize the effects of heroin use, shows a Winona Ryder look-alike bust up an egg and her whole kitchen with a frying pan. That ad already has been running in 12 test cities where it generated a 300% increase in calls to a national clearinghouse of information on drug use, McCaffrey said. The nationwide government campaign is the 15th-largest single-brand ad project, larger than the media buys of American Express, Nike and Sprint, said Steve Dnistrian, senior vice president of the Partnership for a Drug-Free America. McCaffrey's Office of National Drug Control Policy will spend at least $150million of the appropriation solely on air time. Advertising Age figures for 1997 show that for single-brand ads, Sprint spent$149 million for air time, American Express financial services $136 million, and Nike $118 million. Chevrolet was No. 1 with a $321 million campaign. But federal funding will be vulnerable to Capitol Hill's annual appropriations process, which is why all sides strived to keep Thursday's unveiling bipartisan. A one-year campaign is worthless, Dnistrian said. "Coke and Pepsi don't run an ad campaign for a year and then walk away. To maintain market share you have to be out there constantly reminding them." The Lindesmith Center, a research project of philanthropist George Soros, who supports free clean needles for intravenous drug users and legalized marijuana for medical use, issued a statement saying the money would be better spent on after-school programs and drug treatment. For more than a decade, Dnistrian's PDFA has rounded up help from the advertising industry and media outlets - who pitched in as much as $3 billion in free air time - to put out anti-drug ads primarily aimed at young people. But since 1991, with the explosion of new competition that cable channels brought, prime time has been squeezed by network promotions, consigning public service announcements to the wee hours even as drug use by teens skyrocketed. As part of the new ad initiative, the government will ask media outlets to match the taxpayers' investment dollar for dollar. And McCaffrey hoped the campaign would live well beyond five years to keep up with successive crops of young people. "We'll always have to start over with a new generation of eighth-graders," he said. "Some people like to call this a war on drugs. ... It's a war on ignorance." By The Associated Press "The challenge of intellectual life is to be found in dissent against the status quo at a time when the struggle on behalf of underrepresented and disadvantaged groups seems so unfairly weighted against them." - Edward W. Said, Representations of the Intellectual, xvii.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Clinton Sees Drug-Criminal Link (A Different 'Associated Press' Version Emphasizes The $27 Million Released By President Clinton For Local Drug Courts And $5 Million For An Anti-Methamphetamine Campaign) Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 07:12:02 -0700 From: Paul Freedom (firstname.lastname@example.org) Organization: Oregon Libertarian Patriots To: Cannabis Patriots (email@example.com) Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org JULY 11, 15:30 EDT Clinton Sees Drug-Criminal Link By SANDRA SOBIERAJ Associated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) - Tests of criminal defendants in 23 major cities showed Saturday the nation's drug problem is regional and generational, as the use of ``speed'' rebounds in the West and Southwest and cocaine loses its appeal among young troublemakers. In light of the findings, President Clinton released $32 million to help local officials tailor anti-drug strategies. The grants announced in Clinton's weekly radio address followed a nationwide $1 billion government anti-drug ad campaign launched Thursday. Clinton also pushed Saturday for Congress to provide an additional $85 million to expand mandatory drug testing and treatment programs for probationers, prisoners and parolees. Of the federal money released Saturday, $27 million will be used to create special drug courts in 150 jurisdictions. More than 270 drug courts already exist around the country, combining supervision with sanctions, testing and drug treatment to coerce nonviolent criminals to come clean. ``To stop the revolving door of crime and narcotics, we must make offenders stop abusing drugs,'' Clinton said. He noted that in some cities, drug-court participants have recidivism - or repeat offender - rates as low as 4 percent. An additional $5 million in federal money was released to six cities with documented problems of methamphetamine abuse. Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Oklahoma City, Dallas, Minneapolis and Little Rock, Ark., are getting grants to tailor enforcement and prevention efforts to the peculiarities of methamphetamine use. ``There is no single national drug problem. We have lots of very different local drug problems,'' said Jeremy Travis, director of the National Institute of Justice, research arm of the Justice Department. The grants came as the institute's Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring program, or ADAM, showed a rebound in methamphetamine - or ``speed'' - use in Western and Southwestern cities. Where use among arrested people fell in these cities between 1994 and 1996, 1997 testing for the aggression-inducing stimulant put its use back close to 40 percent of adults arrested in San Diego; 18 percent in San Jose, Calif.; 16 percent in Phoenix and Portland, Ore.; and 10 percent in Omaha, Neb. By contrast, crack cocaine use continued to wane in Manhattan, with 21 percent of arrestees testing positive last year compared to 77 percent in 1988. The ADAM survey also found cocaine is not as popular with young defendants as it used to be. In Detroit and Washington, just 5 percent of those aged 15-20 tested positive for cocaine use, compared with almost 50 percent of those 36 and over. In the late 1980s cocaine use among those arrested for crimes reached 80 percent and higher. ``The younger brother looks at what's happening to his older brother, who is now either in jail or a crackhead, ... and says, 'I don't want that to be me,''' Travis said. Marijuana use appeared to be leveling off among male criminals. Fifteen of the 23 survey sites reported drops in marijuana use by the younger group, including substantial drops of between five and nine percentage points in Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Omaha, Phoenix and Washington. Some cities reported slight increases in pot smoking by arrested women. Heroin is finding a younger client base in New Orleans, Philadelphia and St. Louis, the only three sites where heroin abuse was more likely among the 15-20 age group than the older one. ``These findings reinforce the need to be able to monitor the drug use problems at the local level, to provide policy makers with specific guidance about how their programs and interventions are succeeding,'' said Dr. Jack Riley, the ADAM program's director. The program exists in 35 cities - 23 that reported in 1997 and 12 new ones - and is due to expand by 2000 to 75 or 80, including every U.S. city with populations greater than 200,000. In 1997, ADAM collected data, through drug tests and interviews, from almost 32,000 men and women booked on suspicion of crimes.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Clinton - US Must Break Drug, Crime Cycle (The 'Reuters' Version) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 16:59:21 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: WIRE: Clinton: U.S. must break drug, crime cycle Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Source: Reuters Pubdate: 11 Jul 1998 Author: Donna Smith CLINTON: U.S. MUST BREAK DRUG, CRIME CYCLE WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Clinton Saturday said the nation has to do more to break the cycle of drugs and crime and urged Congress to approve money for more testing and treatment programs. "If we want to continue to make communities safer we simply must get more crime-committing addicts to kick the habit," Clinton said in his weekly radio address. He said a study released Saturday shows that more than half and as many as three-quarters of people arrested for crimes test positive for drugs. A Justice Department report released Saturday showed that crack cocaine abuse, which ravaged many communities in the late 1980s and early 1990s, is declining. But it showed abuse of other drugs rising. Specifically it said use of methamphetamines, stimulants known as crank, is rising in the West. "The Justice Department study also shows that we must do more to make a clean break from the use of illegal drugs," Clinton said. He said federal grants will help some 150 communities set up drug courts that will seek to help nonviolent offenders break their drug habits. "To stop the revolving door of crime and narcotics, we must make offenders stop abusing drugs," Clinton said. Under the drug court program, which Clinton said was expanded from a pioneer program that Attorney General Janet Reno helped set up in 1989, nonviolent offenders can get court-supervised help in breaking their drug habits. Those who agree to submit to regular testing and stay clean from drugs can avoid spending time in jail. If they fail to stay clean they are subjected to full punishment for crimes, Clinton said. Clinton said that money approved by Congress this year to fight the methamphetamine problem will be used to finance new community policing initiatives in six Western cities where the drug's use is on the rise. Clinton also urged Congress to approve some $85 million in federal money he requested to help expand the drug court idea and to finance other drug testing and treatment programs for parolees and prison inmates. "I know all members of Congress, regardless of party, want drug use and crime in America to keep going down," Clinton said. He noted that Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, a Georgia Republican, participated in an anti-drug event with the president in Atlanta Thursday. Clinton said the best way to combat crime and drugs is for "Congress to work with me in the remaining days of this legislative session to create even more drug courts and to expand mandatory testing and treatment of those who commit crimes." In the Republican radio address Saturday, Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, Republican of Mississippi, accused Clinton of being a bystander instead of a leader and said Democrats were deliberately trying to tie up legislation so they can accuse the Republican-led Congress of doing nothing.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug War Requires Multiple Strategy, Report States ('The Los Angeles Times' Version In 'The Contra Costa Times') Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 14:13:29 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Drug War Requires Multiple Strategy, Report States Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Source: Contra Costa Times (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.hotcoco.com/index.htm Pubdate: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 Author: Edwin Chen, Los Angeles Times DRUG WAR REQUIRES MULTIPLE STRATEGY, REPORT STATES WASHINGTON -- The use of methamphetamines is rising dramatically in the Western United States, the Justice Department reported Saturday in an extensive new study that also shows America's crack-cocaine epidemic appears to have peaked. In what amounts to a new phase in the ongoing war on drugs, President Clinton released $32 million in federal grants on Saturday to help local officials devise strategies tailored for their communities. "To stop the revolving door of crime and narcotics, we must make offenders stop abusing drugs," Clinton said in his weekly radio address from the Oval Office. The new funds address the drug report's most sobering conclusion: that no single national strategy will work because the drugs of choice vary tremendously by region and age -- with older users preferring cocaine and younger ones favoring marijuana. "There is no single national drug problem," said Jeremy Travis, director of the National Institute of Justice, the Justice Department's research division. "We have lots of different local drug problems." In the West, and particularly in San Diego, the report found that methamphetamine use continues to retain "a very solid hold," with nearly 40 percent of adults arrested in California's second-largest city testing positive. Methamphetamine use soared in the early 1990s, with rates among adults who were arrested reaching as high as 44 percent in San Diego, 25 percent in Phoenix and 20 percent in San Jose, Calif., the study said. By the mid-1990s, however, methamphetamine use fell significantly, with San Diego's rate dropping to 30 percent, Phoenix's to 12 percent and San Jose's to 15 percent. Law enforcement officials attributed the drop to crackdowns that focused largely on supply, rather than demand. But methamphetamine use began climbing again, and the new study's urinalysis data indicated that such drug use "has returned close to" the record levels of the early 1990s. The first of a planned annual "Report on Adult and Juvenile Arrestees" was based on urinalysis testing and interviews of more than 30,000 men, women, boys and girls arrested last year in 23 metropolitan areas. The report comes at a time of increasing focus on the drug war as politicians jockey for partisan advantage before the November elections. On Thursday, House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., joined Clinton in Atlanta to announce an unprecedented $2 billion nationwide media campaign to discourage children from using drugs. The study reinforced the "strong nexus" between crime and drug use, with between 50 percent and 75 percent of arrested persons testing positive for drugs. The decline in cocaine use was especially striking because many cities in the Northeast and the West had reached epidemic levels in the late 1980s, with 80 percent or more of those arrested believed to have been users. The study further found that cocaine use nationally was two to 10 times more likely among males 36 or older than males between ages 15 and 20 -- a trend that could bring lower crime rates because "older cocaine users are aging out or dying out ... " said Jack Riley, director of the institute's Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring Program. In Detroit and Washington, only 5 percent of the younger age group used cocaine -- while nearly 50 percent of the older group tested positive. Researchers call this discrepancy "the big brother syndrome," in which younger children shun a drug after seeing its devastating effects on older users. A similar generational difference, although to a lesser degree, also was found for opiates, including heroin, with older suspects several times more likely than younger ones to test positive, the report said. But the reverse seems to apply to marijuana, which was disproportionately concentrated among youths, the study found. Methamphetamine use prompted special concern among officials. Noting that San Diego has been "extraordinarily hard hit," Riley said at a White House briefing that methamphetamine now surpasses cocaine and marijuana use among persons arrested in the border city. The study also found that methamphetamine use is spreading to rural communities. "It's easy to manufacture," Travis said, adding that there is "good law enforcement evidence that much of the production of methamphetamine is connected to activities south of the border ... " Of the new funding released by Clinton, $27 million will go to more than 150 jurisdictions to create "drug courts," which combine supervision with drug treatment and monitoring as an alternative to incarceration. The president released an additional $5 million to six cities also hard hit by methamphetamine use: Dallas, Little Rock, Ark., Minneapolis, Oklahoma City, Phoenix, Ariz., and Salt Lake City.
------------------------------------------------------------------- McCaffrey Remark Irks Ambassador ('The Associated Press' Notes The US Drug Czar, General McCaffrey, Has Been Caught Lying Again - The Dutch Ambassador To The United States, Joris M. Vos, Says He Is 'Confounded And Dismayed' By McCaffrey's Description Of The Netherlands' Drug Policy Thursday On CNN's 'Talkback Live,' Begging The Question, Why Won't The US Media Challenge The US Government When It Lies About Drug Policy?)Date: Mon, 13 Jul 1998 02:23:15 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: WIRE: McCaffrey Remark Irks Ambassador Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Mike Gogulski (email@example.com) Source: Associated Press Pubdate: 11 Jul 1998 MCCAFFREY REMARK IRKS AMBASSADOR WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Clinton administration's drug czar raised the ire of the Dutch ambassador by criticizing the Netherlands' permissive drug laws. Retired Gen. Barry R. McCaffrey, who was traveling to Europe today on a fact-finding tour, said the Netherlands' policy of letting its citizens use marijuana and other soft drugs for therapeutic and recreational purposes was "an unmitigated disaster." The Dutch ambassador to the United States, Joris M. Vos, said he was "confounded and dismayed" by McCaffrey's description of the Netherlands' drug policy Thursday on CNN's "Talkback Live." "I must say that I find the timing of your remarks, six days before your planned visit to the Netherlands with a view to gaining firsthand knowledge about Dutch drugs policy and its results, rather astonishing," Vos wrote McCaffrey. Drug policy spokesman Rob Housman said McCaffrey hoped the incident would not affect the outcome of the trip. McCaffrey planned to visit major European cities to underscore the need for international cooperation on combating drugs, to look at European treatment and prevention programs and to try to learn from other countries' drug-fighting programs. McCaffrey will visit Sweden, Portugal, Austria, Switzerland and England, as well as the Netherlands, during the eight-day visit. McCaffrey said two highlights of his trip will be a visit to the headquarters of the United Nations Drug Control Program in Austria, where he will exchange views with U.N. officials on global drug cooperation, and to Portugal, where he will visit the European Monitoring Center. In Sweden, Switzerland and the Netherlands he will tour drug treatment facilities. He said he wanted to learn from Swedish officials how to effectively package treatment to help the 4 million chronic addicts in the United States. "We've not yet built the infrastructure required to handle that problem in a more rational way," he said. "It's one of the major shortcomings in the United States." Asked whether he plans to drop by coffee shops in the Netherlands that openly sell marijuana and hashish, McCaffrey responded: "Coffee shops would be a bad photo op. I'm not sure there's much to be learned by watching somebody smoking pot." McCaffrey will wrap up his visit with a brief stop in London on July 18.Copyright 1998 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
------------------------------------------------------------------- McCaffrey Will View European Drug Programs ('The Orange County Register' Version) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 17:47:44 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: McCaffrey Will View European Drug Programs Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: John W. Black Source: Orange County Register (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ Pubdate: 11 Jul 1998 MCCAFFREY WILL VIEW EUROPEAN DRUG PROGRAMS WASHINGTON - For all their cultural and legal differences,countries fighting illegal drugs face the same problems, the U.S. drug-policy director said Friday on the eve of a visit to Europe to share strategies. But retired Gen. Barry R. McCaffrey, the Clinton administration's drug czar, found himself differing with the Dutch ambassador over the Netherlands' permissive drug laws before he even left town. McCaffrey leaves today to visit major European cities to underscore the need for international cooperation on combating drugs, to look at European treatment and prevention programs, and to try to learn from other countries'drug-fighting programs. McCaffrey will visit Sweden, Portugal, Austria, Switzerland and England, as well as the Netherlands, during his eight-day visit. But during an appearance Thursday on CNN's "Talkback Live," McCaffrey said the Netherlands' policy of letting its citizens use marijuana and other soft drugs for therapeutic and recreational purposes was "an unmitigated disaster." In a rapid response to McCaffrey, Joris M. Vos, the Dutch ambassador to the United States, said he was "confounded and dismayed" by the retired general's description of Dutch drug policy.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Transcript Of Press Briefing By Jeremy Travis On Radio Address (A Lengthy 'US Newswire' Release From The White House With The Text Of The Press Conference Yesterday Featuring Jeremy Travis, Director Of The National Institute Of Justice, And Jack Riley, Director Of ADAM, The Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring Program)Date: Mon, 13 Jul 1998 02:01:16 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Transcript: Transcript of Press Briefing by Travis on Radio Address Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Frank S. World (email@example.com) Source: U.S. Newswire Pubdate: 11 Jul 1998 TRANSCRIPT OF PRESS BRIEFING BY TRAVIS ON RADIO ADDRESS WASHINGTON, July 11 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Following is the transcript of a White House press briefing on Friday, July 10, by Jeremy Travis, director of the National Institute of Justice, and Dr. Jack Riley, director of the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring Program, released today by the White House: PRESS BRIEFING ON THE RADIO ADDRESS BY JEREMY TRAVIS, DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF JUSTICE; DR. JACK RILEY, DIRECTOR OF THE ARRESTEE DRUG ABUSE MONITORING PROGRAM The Briefing Room MR. TOIV: Our briefers are Jerry Travis, who is Director of the National Institute of Justice -- that is the research arm of the Department of Justice -- Dr. Jack Riley, who is the Director of the ADAM program in the National Institution of Justice, and that is the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring program. And they will brief on the study that is going to be released tomorrow, as well as on some grants that the President will be announcing. And also available to answer questions on some elements of that will be Harry Kramer, Director of Congressional and Public Affairs for the Office of Justice Programs. Jeremy Travis will begin. MR. TRAVIS: Thank you. Good afternoon. I'm very pleased to be talking this afternoon about three initiatives that the President will be speaking about in his radio address tomorrow morning. First he'll be announcing two grant awards that will be made by the Department of Justice, one having to do with the very serious problem of methamphetamine abuse that is particularly plaguing the western and southwestern parts of this country. And second, an announcement that he'll be making regarding enhancements to the Drug Court Initiative that have been one of the keystones of this administration's overall program against drug abuse. And then I'll be taking you through the ADAM research report that will also be released tomorrow that's being put out by the National Institute of Justice that shows the levels of drug use around the country and in particular the connection between drugs and crime. First, on the methamphetamine initiative, the Congress this year appropriated $34 million in the budget of the Community Oriented Policing Services office within the department to provide direct assistance to law enforcement agencies that are dealing with the very serious problem of methamphetamine influx in their communities. The COPS office will be announcing tomorrow $5 million that will be set aside for direct assistance to a number of jurisdictions that are responding to the problem of methamphetamine. Those jurisdictions that will be invited to participate in this grant program are Phoenix, Arizona; Salt Lake City, Utah; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Dallas, Texas; Little Rock, Arkansas; and Minneapolis, Minnesota. The specific purposes of these grants will be to assist these agencies in -- particularly dealing with the public health and public safety hazards that are posed by methamphetamine to allow for a better coordination between law enforcement and fire departments and environmental protection agencies and the like, because, as you know, the methamphetamine problem requires a coordinated law enforcement and public safety response. The amount of the grants will be up to $750,000 and other jurisdictions, in addition to the six that I mentioned will be also invited to participate. Secondly, the President will be announcing a significant expansion of the Drug Court Initiative of the administration. The specifics of this announcement are that the 150 jurisdictions will receive grants totaling about $27 million to plan, implement and enhance and track the progress of drug courts. Drug courts, as I mentioned at the outset, one of the very important, very significant, very effective innovations that's come about by virtue of the 1994 Crime Act. The first drug court was the brainchild of Attorney General Janet Reno in Dade County in 1989, and since that time the number of drug courts have grown exponentially to the point now where there are well over 270 drug courts in operation around the country. The announcement being made by the President tomorrow will bring that number up to 400. This is a significant use of the criminal justice power, the power of judges to coerce behavior, to encourage individuals who abuse drugs and plague our communities to seek treatment and to stay in treatment. So this announcement will be a major milestone in the use of the federal funds under the Crime Act to provide direct assistance to localities around the country. Third and finally, I'd like to talk a bit about the ADAM research report that were releasing tomorrow from the National Institute of Justice, and I'd like to put this in context a bit. In this briefing room, a number of you have heard about different ways that we have as a country to monitor trends in drug abuse, perhaps best known to the public are two national surveys: the National Household Survey that is based on face-to-face interviews with randomly selected households across the country; and secondly, the Monitoring the Future Survey that is based on interviews with students from a randomly selected sample of high schools. Every year, these surveys give us a picture of increases or decreases in drug abuse at the national level. The ADAM program, the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring research program of the National Institute of Justice, is different from these national surveys in three important ways. First, we collect data at the local level, on a quarterly basis. We do not, and indeed cannot, present a single national picture of drug abuse trends. So the 1997 ADAM Report presents 23 distinct portraits of drug abuse trends in 23 participating cities. Second, although we measure drug abuse in the traditional ways; we ask people -- what is your drug abusing behavior -- as do those other surveys, we also take urine samples to determine the presence or absence of drugs in a person's system at the time of his arrest. So unlike the other surveys, the ADAM data are much less susceptible to both exaggeration and denial of drug use. Third, the people we interview are all arrested and charged with crimes. So even at the local level, our sample is not representative of the overall population, but of the arrestee population. But this third attribute of the ADAM program is, in fact, its greatest strength, because it provides a window on the world of crime. In other words, we are able to track drug use within a specific subpopulation, the criminal population, that is very important to this country for public policy purposes. For example, there as the ADAM program that has enabled researchers to document the decline in the crack cocaine epidemic in our large cities, we have been able to show, for instance, that in Manhattan, crack use among young adult arrestees dropped from 80 percent in 1989 to 33 percent in 1997. We have also been able to show the strong correlation between homicide trends and cocaine positive trends in many ADAM cities. So without this rich data source, the rise and fall of the crack epidemic that is one of the good news stories in our country and its relationship to changing crime trends would be mostly conjecture. So in releasing today's 1997 ADAM report, we wish to reaffirm two central findings of this research program. First, the ADAM data remind us powerfully that there is no single national drug problem in this country. The drug problem of one community is very different from the drug problem of another community, and consequently, the strategies that work in one community may not be right for another community. We need only compare San Diego, California with Washington, D.C. In San Diego, we see that the levels of positive tests among the arrestee population, both for males and females, are at about the 40 percent rates. So methamphetamine is a significant problem in San Diego and in much of the Western to Southwestern part of this country, as shown in the ADAM data. Compare that to the city that we're in -- the Nation's Capital, Washington, D.C. -- the methamphetamine rate is less than one percent, is barely a blip on the screen. So if you are a law enforcement official or a treatment provider or a public health officer or an education leader or a community activist, your drug problem in San Diego is very different from the drug problem that we face here in the Nation's Capital. This is the power of the ADAM data is that we can make those distinctions. The second central finding of the ADAM report is the strong nexus between crime and drug abuse. In all 23 cities included in this study, between one-half and three-quarters of the people charged with crimes had drugs in their system at the time of their arrest. In most cities, 20 percent had multiple drugs in their system. This finding -- when combined with a solid research consensus, that treatment within the criminal justice system can significantly reduce both drug abuse and criminal behavior -- this finding provides the foundation for a number of the initiatives of the Clinton administration. The Drug Court program that I just spoke about, the prison-based treatment program of the Justice Department, the breaking the cycle initiative supported by the Office of National Drug Control Policy, the criminal justice treatment networks funded by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment of Health and Human Services Agency -- all of these are premised on the idea that the coercive powers of the criminal justice system can be used to keep drug users in treatment and thereby reduce drug abuse and reduce crime. General Barry McCaffrey sums up this policy rationale with a simple phrase: "If you hate crime, you'll love treatment." Now, one final word about the ADAM program. Ultimately, ADAM's greatest value is that it can serve as a useful, practical tool for communities across this country to help them develop effective anti-drug strategies at the local level. Under the leadership of Attorney General Reno and with the very strong support of General McCaffrey and Dr. Alan Leshner of NIDA and Tom Constantine of the Drug Enforcement Administration, we at NIJ have developed a five-year plan to expand the ADAM program, which now exists in a total of 35 cities -- 23 original cities and 12 new cities -- to expand that to every city throughout the country over 200,000 in population, for a total of 75 to 80 cities. We will also ask each of those cities in the year 2000 to conduct annual outreach surveys in the rural and suburban and tribal communities that they neighbor so that we can finally develop an understanding of the crime and drug connection in rural, suburban, and tribal America. This is particularly important because of the methamphetamine problem that is being faced by a number of rural communities throughout the country. Now, consistent with the belief that ADAM is ultimately a tool for local policy development, we've also established in all 35 cities currently participating a local coordinating council that represents criminal justice, treatment, and public health agencies to use the ADAM data to develop local drug strategies. As a research agency, we believe that knowledge is power, and by giving hundreds of communities throughout this country a clear picture of the drug problems in their neighborhoods, we believe that the ADAM research program will empower those communities to develop effective strategies to reduce drug abuse and enhance public safety. I would now like to ask Dr. Jack Riley to present some of the findings in the 1997 ADAM report by focusing on four specific drugs. What have we learned about changes in use patterns in methamphetamine use, cocaine use, particularly crack cocaine use, marijuana, and opiates, particularly heroin. And then we'll both be available for questions. Dr. Riley. DR. RILEY: Thank you, Director Travis. My name is Jack Riley and I'm the Director of the ADAM program. The report which I'm going to attempt to summarize is the green-covered document that should be part of your package. I want to speak briefly about the results from our 1997 study. If I can leave you with one thought, it is that we are dealing with multiple drug epidemics among the arrested population, and that these epidemics vary in their intensity, their direction, as well as by location, drug, age group, gender, and race. You may not be able to see the detail presented in the chart up here, but you can probably see how the height of the bars differs by color, which represents the drug, as well as how the height of the bars differ by community. These differences and patterns suggest that community-specific interventions will be required to effectively reduce drug use. To illustrate that point, let's consider the complexity of the cocaine problem, and to a lesser extent, the heroine and marijuana problems here in the Unites States here in these 23 cities. Together, these drugs illustrate some of the variation associated with age groups, as well as the variation in the timing and intensity of drug epidemics that our communities are experiencing. If these 23 sites were ranked in order by percentage of adult males testing positive for cocaine, marijuana -- excuse me, Manhattan would be at the top of the list, with nearly 58 percent of the males testing positive; San Jose at the bottom with about 14 percent, and Philadelphia in the middle with about 34 percent. Within each of those sites, however, it is usually evident that the oldest males, those 36 and older, are far more likely than the youngest males in the adult population, age 15 to 20, to test positive for cocaine. In Detroit, for example, only five percent of the 15-20 year olds tested positive; while nearly 50 percent of the oldest group among males in Detroit tested positive. This age pattern is held in many sites for a number of years. And since younger arrestees are coming into cocaine use at low rates, at least among the arrested population, and older cocaine users are aging out or dying out of cocaine use, we are seeing overall declines in the cocaine positives in these communities among arrestees. In other words, many of the communities to which we are referring today are past the peak of the cocaine epidemic and are increasingly dealing with a problem that is concentrated among older users who may be less criminally active and may have starkly different treatment needs than their younger counterparts. As Director Travis mentioned earlier, and as other NIJ and ADAM publications have demonstrated, the waning of the cocaine and particularly crack epidemic has a clear relationship to violent crime in our communities. Measuring cocaine use among arrestees at the local level is thus one important mechanism for monitoring and predicting violent crime movements. It is important to note that cocaine use is not declining in all sites. A number of communities, primarily in the southwestern United States, are showing increases in cocaine positives. In some cases, young adult males are more likely than the oldest males to test positive for cocaine. Communities where cocaine use among arrestees may still not have reached its peak include Houston, Miami, San Antonio, Dallas, New Orleans, Omaha, Phoenix, and San Jose. In some ways the opiate problem is distinct from the cocaine problem, while in other ways it is similar. One way that the opiate problem, which includes heroin, is different is that only eight communities show more than 10 percent of the arrestees testing positive for opiates, including 22 percent in Chicago and 19 percent in Manhattan. However, the problem is similar to cocaine in that older arrestees are usually far more likely to be involved with heroin use than younger arrestees. Again similar to cocaine, however, there are a number of communities where the younger age groups are starting to catch up, and indeed in some cases exceed the older groups in terms of involvement with opiates, including Philadelphia, New Orleans, and St. Louis. Trends in these cities should be monitored carefully, as they may be indicative of future heroin problems in these communities. Marijuana, in contrast, exhibits the opposite pattern. That is, marijuana is found extensively among younger arrestees but relatively infrequently among the older offenders. Thus while the numbers have leveled off for marijuana in many of our communities, even among the younger offenders, the age structure pattern suggests that these communities, indeed most of the communities in our 23-site system that we're reporting on, will be dealing with substantial marijuana-using populations for many years to come. Let's consider now how drug epidemics can vary by geographic location and subpopulation and how local knowledge of substance abuse trends can be useful for crafting an intervention. Methamphetamine remains a problem primarily in the western United States. The green bars that you see are almost exclusively found on the left side of the map, and the green bars represent methamphetamine. San Diego, where nearly 40 percent of the adult males and females combined tested positive for methamphetamine, has been extraordinarily hard hit. In fact, methamphetamine is now the most prevalent drug among arrestees in San Diego, surpassing that of both cocaine and marijuana. City and county leaders in San Diego responded to this problem by developing a cross-agency task force to address methamphetamine in their community. The ADAM data were a critical component to the development of this response and to monitoring ongoing progress. Other sites with substantial fractions of arrestees testing positive for meth include San Jose at about 18 percent, Portland and Phoenix at about 16 percent, and Omaha at 10 percent. These levels are near or exceed the previous peaks recorded in 1994 and 1995. In addition, methamphetamine remains primarily a problem among white arrestees and among female arrestees. There are some sites where the overall methamphetamine rate is very low, but the level among whites and among females has become notable, including Atlanta, where six percent; Chicago, where three percent; and St. Louis, where three percent of the whites have tested positive for methamphetamine. Since meth use is found primarily among whites and females, these are examples of subpopulations that must be carefully monitored to assess the geographic spread of a drug problem both within and across communities. In summary, these findings in this chart suggest that drug use patterns among arrestees are diverse and locally specific. These findings reinforce the need to be able to monitor the drug use problems at the local level, to provide policymakers with specific guidance about how their programs and interventions are succeeding. Over the coming years, we will have the opportunity to test for a wider range of substances at our sites, and in certain subpopulations. And with these advances, we will improve our ability to help communities understand their specific drug problems and consequently, to develop appropriate community-specific responses. Thank you. Q The release here says that the study shows that in 9 of 23 cities, the number of arrestees testing positive remain the same or decrease. So, in the majority, in other words, the testing is increasing. Secondly, how would you compare the increase in opiate testing with the decrease in cocaine? I mean, are these offsetting each other -- is the problem still the same level, just different drugs? MR. TRAVIS: The first comment you made is sort of the overall number of individual who test positive, is that up or down? There's some small number -- nine cities where, overall, that number is down. The rest is -- or holding constant -- the rest is up. So we measure for any drug that's in the system, and so we -- that finding looks at any or any multiple, of drugs. So the general statement is that there's some that are going up and some that are going down in terms of any drug. The second question is about substitution effects, whether there are changes from one population that is at one point in time using drug A to drug B is complicated, because we find that with some drugs -- for example, the methamphetamine numbers that we are reporting that is, in fact, a very different population, so that the presence of methamphetamine, we're finding, is more often in whites and more often in females than for cocaine or heroin or other drugs. There's clearly some multiple drug use, there is clearly some substitution -- we don't know exactly how much -- but overall, we're finding differences in the populations that are testing positive for different drugs. Q But it's not possible to conclude in this data whether the drug problem is getting worse or better in terms of -- MR. TRAVIS: I think the clear implication of the ADAM report is that there are different drug problems; they're different by type of drug and they're different by locality. If you look at the use of cocaine, particularly crack cocaine, this is clearly an area where there has been significant change in a positive direction in a large number of particularly large cities across the country with very beneficial effects. The numbers that we show in Manhattan, for example, where, as we know, there is a near miracle in terms of crime reduction there, show that the levels of crack use have been going down particularly in the younger population, and our report shows that the older population is now becoming the more predominant drug using population for crack cocaine. On the other hand, the meth problem is going in a direction that causes concern. So the announcement today of assistance for local law enforcement is bringing some much-needed relief to those police agencies because the methamphetamine problem is going up. So different drug problems in different communities. Q Since fads and trends often start in the west and go east, including fads and trends in drugs, should there be a national concern about meth usage in the rest of the country since it is so high in places like San Diego now? MR. TRAVIS: We're not showing levels of methamphetamine use in the eastern cities; we are showing it in some of the midwestern cities. I'll have to ask Jack whether it's gone up in those midwestern cities or not. Q Well, he said it was very high in San Diego, for instance. MR. TRAVIS: It's clearly very high, disproportionately high in the western, southwestern cities where we're testing. Q Since these trends often move from west to east, I'm asking you is, is there concern about meth gaining in popularity in other cities from west to east. MR. TRAVIS: The concern that we hear from law enforcement and from communities around the country is both that concern, that it's moving from where it's now, in some cases, the predominant drug, as in San Diego within our population, to midwestern cities. But there's also a very real concern about the spread of methamphetamine use in rural communities. And we don't now test for levels of methamphetamine use in rural communities, but the new program will allow us to do that. Q Is that because it's so easy to manufacture? MR. TRAVIS: It is easy to manufacture. Why it's picking up in rural communities, I think we need to know a lot more about that. Let me just ask Jack if he can add to that. DR. RILEY: Only that I think we might begin to develop some additional information on potential spread to the eastern United States as we bring on the 12 new cites that are identified on the cover of this year's report. But when I spoke about Atlanta, Chicago and St. Louis, which are the easternmost sites, those numbers, while relatively significant among the white offender population in those cities, represent a small number of individuals. So, to date, I don't think we're seeing any compelling evidence that methamphetamine is spreading eastward, only that it has a very solid hold in the western United States. Q Do you know why it is that these communities have such different usages of the various drugs? Is it that the supply of methamphetamine is great in the southwest, or is it that tastes vary in drugs just like they do in food -- they have Philly cheese steaks in Philadelphia and tacos in San Diego. What's the reason? MR. TRAVIS: Well, in terms of methamphetamine production, there is good law enforcement evidence that much of the production of methamphetamine is connected to activities south of the border in Mexico. So I think that there is sort of an international issue there that General McCaffrey is very concerned about as well as Administrator Constantine. I think some drug epidemics come and go. That's certainly what's happening with crack. And they take hold in places in some places and not in others. The good news that we've talked about in terms of the crack use shows that there is also an intergenerational difference in terms of these use patterns. So that we're seeing younger people who are now coming of the age where they might engage in risky behaviors, including drug use, including crack cocaine use, who are using at much lower rates than their slightly older brothers or brothers' and sisters' friends. In the research literature, this is called sort of the "big brother" syndrome, where the younger brother looks at what's happening to his older brother, who is now either in jail or a crackhead or engaged in some risky and unproductive behavior, and says, I don't want that to be me. So we have not only these regional differences but these generational differences in terms of drug epidemics. And part of what we believe is happening with the crack epidemic is this combination of very effective law enforcement -- law enforcement, problem-solving policing has figured out how to deal much more effectively with the violence associated with crack markets -- and a different message that's being perceived and acted upon by younger people in terms of that very risky behavior. Q Could you repeat, is there any correlation between the type of drug use and the type of crime committed? DR. RILEY: We executed the study at the National Institute of Justice, published last year, looking at homicide trends in eight cities across the United States, six of which are cities that are part of this network. And in cases where both the homicide trends were declining and the homicide trends were increasing, there is relatively clear correlation between that homicide trend and the percentage of homicides and the percentage of adult males testing positive for cocaine. We can't distinguish in the testing between powder cocaine and crack cocaine, but we do know from our self-report information that most of those individuals are, in fact, crack users rather than powder cocaine users. And so -- Q But it hasn't been taken beyond that level? DR. RILEY: We've also extended that analysis to the other 17 cities that are part of the system, and again, that same relationship holds. But as far as relationship to other types of violent crime, that type of analysis was a little more difficult. Homicide was chosen because you have effective reporting; it's very easy to find a victim and the counts and the quality of the information on the homicide are much clearer. Q But there's no cross-reference between a test for marijuana or methamphetamine and robbery or -- DR. RILEY: No, we tested methamphetamine, marijuana and heroin, or the opiate class, against homicide rates. There was some correlation between heroin and homicide rates, but it turns out that a lot of heroin users are poly-drug users, including testing positive for cocaine. People that test positive only for opiates, not for cocaine, there is no relationship. Q With methamphetamine use growing in the white and female population, does that correspond to a growth in arrests among whites and females, or are the arrest rates the same, it's just more of them have used drugs? DR. RILEY: I don't think our data are showing changes in underlying arrest rates. What we typically get is approximately 20 percent of the individuals in any given jurisdiction are arrested on drug charges. So they could be arrested on a cocaine charge, they could be arrested on a methamphetamine charge. The other 80 percent of the offenders are in there for a variety of other charges -- prostitution, property offenses, and so forth. So the mix of people that we interviewing as part of this program is probably not changing. How that translates into -- Q -- just as many women and just as many whites as always, -- they're not going up? DR. RILEY: Correct. I believe so, but whether the underlying arrest patterns in those communities are changing, I have less information at this point. Q Did you add together all the arrests in all the cities and come up with a percentage of positive results as an aggregate? MR. TRAVIS: A methodological question. DR. RILEY: The answer is no, we don't do that at this point. I would venture -- Q Why not? DR. RILEY: It's relatively difficult to be able to compare cross-communities. To give one example, at this point, what we call our catchment area, which is the underlying population of arrestees, in some communities, it's a city; in other communities, it's a county; in some communities, we're only one of the jails that might be in the county. As we progress methodologically through the next couple of years, I think we'll be able to provide that picture. But then you get into problems of, particularly with lower-level offenses, whether the underlying offenses that you're putting together are truly comparable across jurisdictions. MR. TRAVIS: I think the idea of using these data to create a single national picture is a tempting idea. I understand that. But I think the power of what we've been able to demonstrate through this research report is that, in fact, there are very different pictures of drug abuse patterns and trends and problems at the local level. So the national data have some value. I'm not discounting the importance of understanding at the national level whether marijuana use, cocaine use, heroin use, methamphetamine use is up in an aggregate sense. But to say that heroin use is up three percent doesn't really help a police commissioner in Baltimore, where they have a very significant heroin problem and wants to know whether the heroin problem in Baltimore is moving in the right direction. So it may be possible, methodologically, at some point, to aggregate those data and control for the variables. But I think the policy picture that is very evident and clear and comes in focus when you look at the ADAM data is, in effect, there is no single national drug problem. We have lots of very different local drug problems, and if we give this information about those local problems to those local communities on an ongoing basis with regular feedback as to whether they're making a difference, whether community policing strategy is working, whether the drug court is working, whether the epidemic is waning or waxing, this information is very important and not previously available to local communities. Q Is it fair to conclude, then, that there's limits on how broad a national drug policy can be? If we've got all of these different local problems, then a national role would seem to be limited in how it -- MR. TRAVIS: Well, I think, in fact, the other two announcements that the President is making tomorrow that are expansion by nearly 40 percent of the number of drug courts and the award of $5 million of grants to local law enforcement agencies in the communities that are affected by the methamphetamine problem, that type of federal assistance coming out of this administration is exactly the type of support that is needed for communities to be able to do something about their drug problems at their local levels. So a methamphetamine grant to a city that is plagued by methamphetamine problems is -- that is real assistance from the national level, and that's the role that the federal government is trying to play. MR. TOIV: Great. Thank you. END 1:45 P.M. EDT -0- U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770/ 07/11 10:15 Copyright 1998, U.S. Newswire
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Is A Menace, Physicians Write ('The Vancouver Sun' Prints Classic Misinformation By Three British Columbian Prohibitionists With The Addictive Drugs Information Council) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: Marijuana is a menace, physicians write (fwd) Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 12:04:01 -0700 Lines: 69 NEWSHAWK: Gil Puder PUBDATE: Saturday, 11 July 1998 Source: Vancouver Sun ( Canada) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Authors: Chuck Doucette, Mary-Stewart Moore, Roy Morton There is a very simple fact about marijuana. It is an addictive drug with harmful effects. It is not a harmless recreational substance, as the agents of its glamorization suggest, buttressing their advocacy of the decriminalization of cannabis possession, de jure or de facto, with so-called scientific evidence and references to supportive opinion polls. The polls show that only about one-quarter of Canadians think that possession of marijuana should be legal. The same national research shows that those who are most in favour of decriminalization are also most likely to use the drug. The mythology about the harmless effect of marijuana, we think, is driven by the collective memory of baby boomers. In the 1960s, the THC content in cannabis was only about two per cent. Today the THC content is much higher making it more powerful and more addictive. (THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the active ingredient in marijuana responsible for the sensory, mood and physical changes sought by users of the drug.) The emphasis of law enforcement today is on apprehending major drug dealers and importers. The police have joined forces with physicians to provide the latest information on marijuana to the community, allowing people to make an informed decision about a hazardous drug. Much has changed since the 60s in the police and court treatment of minor possession of marijuana. For example, police do not fingerprint or take mug shots of people they have arrested for possession of less than 30 grams of cannabis. The courts usually impose minor penalties for possession of less than 30 grams to ensure innocent victims don't get stuck with a criminal record. Those who leave the impression that marijuana is harmless are ignoring ample medical and scientific evidence to the contrary. This is either willful ignorance and alarms the medical and law enforcement communities which must deal with the consequences on a daily basis. One of the biggest health debates in this province today is not about marijuana-but about tobacco. Smoking tobacco can kill you- and those around you who are exposed to second-hand smoke. Governments, health agencies and community groups now are taking strong actions to not only curb tobacco use, but to eliminate exposure to second-hand smoke. The actions to curb tobacco smoking are commendable. Yet smoking just one joint deposits in a person four times the cancer causing tar of one cigarette. If we had to do it all over again, it is unlikely that the sale of tobacco would ever be permitted considering the devastating death toll it has caused and the crushing impact on our health care system. It is not too late with marijuana to learn from our tobacco experience. - Mary-Stewart Moore and Roy Morton are Vancouver physicians. Chuck Doucette is an RCMP sergeant and provincial coordinator of the force's drug awareness program. They are members of the Addictive Drugs Information Council, a non-profit group.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Re - Marijuana Is A Menace, Physicians Write (A Letter Sent To The Editor Of 'The Vancouver Sun' In Response To Today's Propaganda) From: email@example.com (Matt Elrod) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Sent: Marijuana is a menace, physicians write Date: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 13:58:26 -0700 Lines: 76 This is way too long but I had to vent. ME To the editor, I am dismayed that doctors Moore and Morton are so completely misinformed about cannabis, (Marijuana is a menace, July 11). They write, "It is an addictive drug with harmful effects." Evidently the doctors have not read the recent federally funded study, "Cannabis Control in Canada: Options Regarding Possession" by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (1). According to a 1995 Ontario student survey, less than 2% of students use cannabis daily. In a 1994 survey of Ontario adults, less than 1% reported daily use. Even weekly use is relatively uncommon. Only 2% of the total sample had used cannabis at least once a week in the last year. Moore and Norton claim that, "The polls show that only about one-quarter of Canadians think that possession of marijuana should be legal." In reality, the most recent Angus Reid poll (2) found that 51% of Canadians think cannabis possession should not be a criminal offence. In B.C. the figure is 63%. Nationally, 83% of Canadians believe that it should not be a criminal offense to smoke cannabis for health purposes. Moore and Norton claim, "The same national research shows that those who are most in favour of decriminalization are also most likely to use the drug." On the contrary, the poll found that the subset of Canadians opposed to cannabis decriminalization are the least educated and the least affluent. The doctors claimed that cannabis contains more carcinogenic tar without citing a single cancer-related death attributable to cannabis. The most recent research (3) shows that neither chronic nor casual cannabis smokers exhibit significantly different rates of decline in lung function compared with non-smokers. Moore and Morton speculated that cannabis contains more of the active ingredient, THC, today than it did in the sixties. Even if this were true, which it is not, THC is not carcinogenic (4). The more potent the cannabis, the less tar the cannabis user consumes (5). The doctors conclude, "It is not too late with marijuana to learn from our tobacco experience." Indeed. Tobacco use is on the decline thanks to taxation, regulation and education. Even if, contrary to every major study on the subject and over 5000 years of experience, cannabis is the deadly menace Moore and Morton claim it is, it would make less sense to hire the Hell's Angels to distribute it. It is not too late to learn from our alcohol prohibition experience. REFERENCES (1) Cannabis Control in Canada: Options Regarding Possession http://www.ccsa.ca/canfinal2.htm (2) Canadians views on decriminalizing marijuana smoking http://www.angusreid.com/pressrel/marijuana_nov1997.htm (3) Volume 155 of the American Journal of Respiratory & Critical Care Medicine / Dr. Donald P. Tashkin, UCLA School of Medicine. http://www.newscientist.com/nsplus/insight/drugs/marijuana/lungs.html (4) Dr. John Bucher, U.S. National Toxicology Program. http://nytsyn.com/live/Alcohol/030_013097_144221_351.html (5) "Cannabis 1988. Old Drug, New Dangers The Potency Debate" by Todd H. Mikuriya M.D., Michael R. Aldrich Ph.D. "Journal of Psychoactive Drugs" Vol. 20 Iss. 1 pp. 47-55 pub. Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts, Lynn Zimmer, Associate Professor of Sociology Queens College and John P. Morgan, Professor of Pharmacology, City University Medical School, http://www.marijuanafacts.org/ Matthew M. Elrod 4493 [No Thru] Rd. Victoria, B.C. V9C-3Y1 Phone: 250-[867-5309] Email: email@example.com
------------------------------------------------------------------- One Dose Of This Drug Could Cure Any Addiction . . . (Britain's 'Times' Recounts The Long Struggle By Howard Lotsof In The United States To Introduce Ibogaine As A Treatment For Addiction To Heroin And Other Hard Drugs) Date: Mon, 13 Jul 1998 19:02:40 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: HSLotsof@aol.com Originator: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org From: (HSLotsof@aol.com) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: Text London Times Ibogaine article (c) 1998 Times Newspapers. All rts. reserv. ONE DOSE OF THIS DRUG COULD CURE ANY ADDICTION ...Times of London Saturday, July 11, 1998 By: Simon Witter Section Features Word Count: 2,804 ...or so some scientists claim. Others fear that this so-called wonderdrug is more destructive than the substances it hopes to replace Suzie's head felt like it had been split open. She could see her cleansed brain, and it shone with a brightness that was hard to look at. But she knew she must try. Images flickered around the screen of her consciousness, illuminated one by one by a dazzling beam of light which speedily picked out new memories with a relentlessness that she could not control. She was entering the second phase of a 36-hour experience that could cure her addictive behaviour for ever. A few hours earlier she had taken a dose of ibogaine, and now she lay in a waking dream, being ravished by dramatic visions that she would then interpret to make sense of the way her life had turned out. Suzie's hope was that, without suffering the pain of withdrawal, she would wake from this trip and never feel the need to take heroin again. According to the evidence of scientists who administered the drug, and many of their patients, her chances were good. Ibogaine, an alkaloid derived from the root of the African plant tabernanthe iboga, is a hallucinogenic substance used in the initiation ceremonies of the Gabonese Bwiti society. Its supposed ability to block opiate withdrawal symptoms and take away the desire of addicts to use drugs again has now put it at the centre of a raging scientific debate. If it can be brought to the mass market at an affordable price, and if it works as well as its advocates claim, ibogaine's potential is extraordinary. It would, they say, painlessly cure opiate addiction and could also be highly effective in curing cocaine, alcohol and even tobacco addiction as well as a variety of other addictive behaviour patterns. Its detractors argue that no drug could ever deliver the therapeutic effects claimed. Only 300 people have been treated with ibogaine this decade, clearly too few to form a basis for any meaningful research. It is certainly an expensive affair. The drug is illegal in the United States, where it is classed in the same category as the hard drugs from which it is claimed to provide relief (a result of the post-psychedelia 1970 Controlled Substances Act). But its protagonists in America managed to gain FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) approval for testing on humans as well as persuading NIDA (the National Institute on Drug Abuse, a branch of the National Institute on Health in Maryland) to spend millions of dollars on research into the drug. In Britain and most of the rest of the world, ibogaine is simply not registered on classified drugs lists. As a result, treatments such as the one Suzie undertook, are available - at a price - across the world. American Howard Lotsof, the man initially responsible for the interest in ibogaine, occasionally treats people in a seven-day hospital programme in Panama at a cost varying from $8,000 to $20,000. University of Miami neuro-pathologist Dr Deborah Mash has established a competing 14-day programme in St Kitts ($10,000), while devout ibogaine advocate Eric Taub used to treat people on a boat in international waters. He now has clinics in Costa Rica and Italy which offer programmes starting at $2,200. There may be up to a dozen outfits in the Taub mould, but unless ibogaine becomes legal and affordable, the people taking it will be paying through the nose to be research guinea pigs. "I remained at each level until I was comfortable with it," remembers Bob, one of Taub's patients. "Then a very strong wave hit me and things began to escalate rapidly. There were sapphire blue tendrils that moved up the wall and became flowers. I began to hear music, voices, a cacophony of other whirring, drumming, and creaking, rushing sounds. Although I was scared, I liked it. It seemed that things remained awhile until I got comfortable, then went beyond anything I had ever experienced. I was floating in a sea of physical sensations and I closed my eyes. My eyelids were the window to an array of visions floating in a void. "I felt that iboga was teaching me. I began to sense a threshold that would totally disconnect me from this reality and I would resolve my deepest conflicts; I would see the face of God. I became terrified. Fearing for my life and sanity, I vomited, which immediately pulled me back from the threshold." Bob says that the experience cured him of his heroin addiction. His account is one of scores of first-hand testimonies to the powerful and - some claim - beneficial effects of a drug that is provoking a flood of scientific interest. More than 4,000 research papers have been written on the subject, including snappy, layman-friendly stuff like: "Quantum Coherence in Microtubules: A Neural Basis For Emergent Consciousness?" Some recent medical research suggests that ibogaine has a number of wondrous physical properties. Many patients have described the experience as being like a resetting of their controls. Ken Alper, assistant professor of psychiatry and neurology at New York University, found that, effectively, it did just that to the abnormal brainwaves of crack addicts he monitored before and after ibogaine ingestion. "Drug addiction is nature's sadistic joke," he says. "The addictive brain is out of balance, its chemistry deviates from the normal. Ibogaine normalises the EEG (brainwave readings), it resets the brain." In the 1950s, American psychologist Leo Zeff and psychiatrist Claudio Naranjo were using ibogaine in their practice, and the CIBA corporation (now CIBA-Geigy) was investigating its usefulness as an anti-anxiety drug, but its potential to painlessly release people from the craving for drugs was discovered quite by accident. In 1962, Howard Lotsof, then a film student from New York, was offered a single dose of ibogaine. Deciding that a 36-hour hallucinogen sounded too exhausting for him to want to take, he gave it to a much more experienced friend, who came back and told him that this was a completely new kind of drug. Lotsof was part of a group of 20 or more friends experimenting with psychoactive drugs such as Mescaline, DMT, psilocybin and LSD (all legal at the time). He had also been taking heroin for some time. They took ibogaine as part of that experimentation, with no intention whatsoever of giving up any kind of drug use, but 33 hours later Lotsof discovered that he was no longer dependent on heroin. For six months after that one dose he also stopped taking cocaine and all other drugs. The effect on the rest of the group was much the same. Lotsof was 19 at the time and knew very little about pharmaceutical development, so nothing became of this accidental revelation. He spent the Sixties as an active member of the counterculture and Free Speech Movement in Berkeley, California. Ibogaine didn't stop him re-acquainting himself with heroin in 1969, but he finally went through detox and stabilised his life in one of the first methodone programmes in 1970, after which he ran a plumbing business in New York and worked as a line producer for Rock Against Racism concerts. In the Eighties he began to feel that his discovery was too important not to pursue, and started hunting for pharmaceutical-grade ibogaine with which to conduct research. In 1986 he founded a New York corporation, NDA International Inc, partly as a humanitarian mission and partly to market a proprietary pharmaceutical preparation, "Endabuse", composed of capsules of ibogaine hydrochloride. He filed patents for the use of ibogaine to treat addiction and started to seek FDA approval to test the drug. Initial, over-simplified reports of the way ibogaine works suggested that patients relive their entire childhood in 36 hours, during which they identify the holes they are filling with their addictive behaviour. Having understood why they're behaving this way, they are said to wake up cured of those urges. If one dose of ibogaine really did deliver a lifetime of therapy, it would be one of the greatest pharmaceutical breakthroughs of the late 20th century. But even Lotsof concedes that ibogaine treatment needs to be backed up by therapy. But many are still highly doubtful of the claims made for the drug. Tony Dickenson, professor of neuro-pharmacology at University College London, is sceptical. "From a neurological point of view, it's highly unlikely that a substance can make you re-run childhood memories," he says. "The brain matures for a long time, and the view you have of the world - and the way you store it - before you're 12 years old is pretty immature. Most people's memories of early childhood are pretty skimpy, as the controversy surrounding dishonest repressed memory therapy has shown us. And the idea that some really early event puts you on the road to drugs later on isn't that tenable." Many reports of the ibogaine experience, principally posted on the Internet, are positive, but the drug does create very different experiences in different people, and some recipients have been terrified by the results. Janet, a Californian alcoholic who paid $10,000 to undergo ibogaine treatment (along with ten heroin addicts) as part of Dr Mash's St Kitts programme last December, remembers it not working at all. "I was told ibogaine was not a hallucinogen - bullshit. It's like acid times one million," she recalls. "I was also seeking 'God in a pill' along with the other addicts. I saw God all right - I talked to him. And I was sure it was real. But it wasn't an all-loving God. It was someone who scared the hell out of me. Some of the addicts became Jesus Christ and were crucified or had aliens rape them. Ibogaine worked for me for a month because it makes you so physically sick you can't even stand the thought of eating, much less drinking or doing drugs. The visions were so excruciating. The embarrassment of paying such a price for a bogus deal was the reason I was able to go a month without a drink." No illicit ibogaine drug market currently exists between the clinics carrying out official treatments and home chemists trying to isolate the active metabolite from bark scrapings bought via the internet. One reason is that extracting the plant's active ingredients is a difficult chemical process too complicated for illegal drug dealers. Ibogaine has had fleeting appearances on the illegal drug market. It was reportedly used by young addicts in San Francisco as a substitute for LSD but it suddenly disappeared from the market. It seems that some drug dealers thought that its use could deprive them of part of their clientele. It has also been reported that a Mexican clinic refused to carry out ibogaine research for fear that it would provoke the wrath of local drug lords. But this doesn't mean that ibogaine - which until 1995 was well on its way to public availability - will be used by the medical establishment in the near future. One of the principal reasons, ironically, is a bitter legal row between its two leading protagonists, Lotsof and Mash. According to Lotsof, the critical toxicity studies that were required for FDA approval (without which no new drug can be marketed) have been stopped by Deborah Mash, who has now patented several ibogaine-like substances -Trycyclic Ibogaine Analogs - which she is developing under the auspices of the Universities of Miami and Minnesota. Lotsof sued her for breach of contract, both for stopping the tests and patenting analogs which (under the terms of the contract) he claims should belong to NDA. Mash countersued, but Lotsof didn't have enough money to go to court. One day before he lost the case by default, he was offered the services of an attorney on a no-win, no-fee basis. The trial is now set to go ahead in the next few months, but for Lotsof it may already be too late. "Putting myself aside," he says, "the way the FDA development of the drug has been held up for years is terrible. Though ibogaine is a restricted substance in the US, the FDA gave a go-ahead for human testing and the DEA is co-operative on the matter. That work should have been completed by now. It has simply been stopped while competing products have been developed." Dr Mash insists her Tryclic Ibogaine Analogs are a whole new class of compounds synthesized by a collaborator of hers at the University of Minnesota, independently from her clinical trials or from the Endabuse procedure. She also claims that when she, Juan Sanchez-Ramoz and Dr Lee Hearn discovered an active metabolite called Nor-ibogaine (a wholly new molecule) and disclosed their findings, Lotsof came down to Miami and agreed on a 50-50 split with the university. "Here's the only academic environment that has offered him the chance to test his drug in a scientifically credible way, and he immediately turns round and bites the hand that's feeding him," she says. On top of the bust-up with Dr Mash, NIDA, which has already pumped millions of dollars in grants into many ibogaine research groups, seems to have gone cold on the whole idea. One of the many theories as to why this has happened is that there is a "methadone mafia" entrenched in both NIDA and the scientific-medical community that feels threatened by the prospect of a cure to addiction. But Lotsof is not so sure about this conspiracy theory. "Even some of the methadone people are beginning to swing around," he says. "The responsible ones would like every tool at their disposal to help people dependent on drugs. Any new technology is met with resistance by the old guard." Dana Beal, Aids activist and co-author of The Ibogaine Story, feels that NIDA has a problem with Howard Lotsof's roots in the counterculture, making him someone they would rather demonise than help. "Things Deborah Mash said to me indicated that NIDA had a problem with Lotsof," she says. "Howard was too close to people like me. ONDCP (Office of National Drug Control Policy, or America's drug tsar equivalent) has been under instructions not to deal with legalisers since mid 1993 at least." Not true, says Frank Vocci, director of the Medication Development Division at NIDA. "I spent four years working with Howard Lotsof, there's no way I would spend several million dollars of taxpayers' money - and we did - just to parry someone off in a clever fashion. I'd tell them to get lost. "In 1995 we asked a group of outside clinicians if we should go ahead with this drug. We got nine serious no replies and four tentatively saying yes." Vocci says NIDA was presented with ibogaine as a total cure, but without therapy the ratios went down to about one in eight patients totally cured. "We can do that well with non-pharmacological treatments that are a lot less risky. We gave it our best shot. It was a major project here." And if ibogaine works as well as its protagonists claim, why aren't pharmaceutical corporations falling over each other to invest in a slice of what could be a very big pie? Apart from George Soros, the billionaire financier, who sponsors ibogaine seminars in New York, big business backing is noticeably lacking. "The pharmaceutical industry is marketing-led," says Dr Dickenson. "It's not the extent of the disorder that counts, it's the amount of money they can make. Most prescription drugs are administered daily over a period of weeks, months or years. Ibogaine is generally used once in a single dose, and then followed up with several months of psychotherapy. And for a drug to get FDA approval for marketing, it has got to be pretty benign. There are a lot of drugs that we already use that wouldn't make the market now, as things have been tightened up. So a drug with the powerful psychoactive actions of ibogaine is going to find it hard." Lotsof has spent 15 years approaching pharmaceutical companies, investment houses and venture capitalists for funding, but the stumbling block has always been FDA approval. He is sceptical that they will ever show interest in developing medications to treat addiction. But that does not mean that ibogaine use won't grow beyond the clinics of Lotsof, Mash and Taub. "The ibogaine movement should be less bitter," says Ken Alper. "That an informal self-help culture of addicts has got this far is amazing. These people have no political power, no big industry connections. It takes $20-$50 million to bring a drug to the market. They're halfway through that phase with no sponsor. That's not bad. And it's not over yet."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Smoke For Strokes (Britain's 'New Scientist' Notes Last Week's News That A Team Of Researchers At The US National Institute For Mental Health Has Discovered Two Active Components Of Marijuana They Think Could Be Used To Prevent Brain Damage After Strokes) Date: Fri, 17 Jul 1998 18:54:56 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UK: Smoke for Strokes Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Peter Webster Source: New Scientist (UK) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.newscientist.com/ Pubdate: July 11, 1998 Author: Philip Cohen SMOKE FOR STROKES Cannabis, it turns out, can protect the brain from damage Two constituents of marijuana can help prevent the brain damage that often follows a stroke. The discovery by researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) near Washington DC will add weight to the arguments of doctors who think the drug should be legal for medical use. Some patients with multiple sclerosis, glaucoma and AIDS-related wasting already take marijuana. It also seems to help relieve the nausea suffered by cancer patients undergoing powerful chemotherapy. When marijuana is smoked or eaten, chemicals called cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) enter the body. THC binds to proteins on the surface of brain cells called cannabinoid receptors, causing the drug's mind-altering effects. CBD doesn't bind to these proteins and is not psychoactive. Aidan Hampson and his NIH colleagues were interested in the normal role of these receptors. "We didn't evolve them so that some people could enjoy smoking pot," he says. Hampson suspected that activating the receptors might change how cells respond to the neurotransmitter glutamate. Damping down this response can be crucial, since depriving neurons of oxygen, as happens in a stroke, makes them pump out too much glutamate. This in turn boosts the production of reactive free radicals, which can kill brain cells. The researchers treated rat neurons with toxic levels of glutamate and then tested THC's ability to prevent cell death. They found that extremely low concentrations of THC protected the neurons, suggesting that the cannabinoid receptors might indeed be involved. But to their surprise, CBD gave exactly the same level of protection. So if binding to the receptors wasn't crucial, how were THC and CBD protecting the brain cells from chemical attack? The researchers wondered if they might work like vitamins C and E, antioxidants that inactivate free radicals by giving up electrons. They found that both CBD and THC gave up electrons easily. In fact, they were able to protect at least 20 per cent more neurons than either vitamin C or E at the same concentration (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol 95, p 8268). Since they submitted that paper, the researchers have begun testing the ability of CBD to prevent brain damage in rats in which they had induced strokes. Preliminary results are promising, Hampson says. Hampson notes that people can tolerate high doses of CBD, and because it quickly penetrates the brain, CBD could be an ideal drug for treating strokes. It's unclear whether the doses of CBD absorbed by smoking cannabis could protect brain cells. But the findings will stoke the debate over the medical use of marijuana. Those who have argued against legalisation have pointed out that THC is available legally in a purified form called marinol. "But now we know that CBD may also be therapeutic, so marinol isn't a complete substitute," says Hampson. Lester Grinspoon of the Harvard Medical School in Boston, who advocates the medical use of marijuana, says: "Critics have insisted for a long time that marijuana must damage the brain. Now it turns out it might actually be neuroprotective. I'd say we've come full circle."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Patient Heal Thyself? / Mostly In The Mind (An Editorial In Britain's 'New Scientist,' Accompanied By A Report It Addresses About Two American Psychologists Who Claim Most Of The Therapeutic Effects Of Antidepressants Can Be Mimicked By Placebos - URL Included For The Researchers' Results In The Current Issue Of 'Prevention And Treatment,' The American Psychological Association's Electronic Journal) Date: Sat, 18 Jul 1998 09:41:23 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UK: Editorial: Patient Heal Thyself? Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Peter Webster Source: New Scientist (UK) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.newscientist.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 11 Jul 1998 Author: Editorial and Michael Day Note: The editorial is accompanied in the same issue by the article to follow. PATIENT HEAL THYSELF? Psychiatrists will have to rethink the way they test drugs like Prozac TENDENTIOUS. Preposterous. A failure of peer review. These are not words that scientists normally use to describe the work of other researchers. The recipients are two American psychologists, whose study has firmly put the cat among the pigeons by claiming that most of the therapeutic effects of expensive antidepressant pills like Prozac can be mimicked by dummy pills (see p 13). In other words, in the real world what matters most about these drugs is not their ability to alter brain chemistry in specific ways, but their ability to raise patients' hopes and expectations. If the new study turns out to be correct, psychiatrists will need to rethink their views about how antidepressants work. They may also need to rethink their views about the causes of mental illnesses in the first place. And, of course, if antidepressants do turn out to be little more than elaborate placebos, perhaps the same will be true of other psychiatric drugs. But these are big ifs. When Prozac shot to fame in the early 1990s, it was touted as one of the most specific of the psychiatric drugs because it acted only on designated brain cells. It seemed to confirm what psychiatrists and drugs companies had been saying for years: that mental illnesses such as depression are the products of chemical imbalances in the brain that can be fixed - and safely - with a cunningly designed drug. Tarnished by Freudian pseudoscience and controversial therapies such as ECT, psychiatry has never had the equivalent of a Newton or Lavoisier, but Prozac seemed to push it into a new era of hope, rationality, and scientific respectability. In recent years, pharmacists' shelves have filled up with other so-called serotonin re-uptake inhibitors, and tens of millions of people around the world have swallowed the drugs on the understanding not only that they work but that their actions are specific. The new study seems to throw this perception into confusion. The idea that patients' hopes and expectations influence the way they respond to pills is nothing new. This, after all, is why researchers use placebos as control treatments in clinical trials. But the idea that this "placebo responding" can account for a staggering 75 per cent of the impact of antidepressants will amaze doctors and patients alike. Even more controversially, the study suggests the remaining 25 per cent might also be a placebo response rather than a consequence of each drug's biochemistry. The argument is that patients' expectations about a pill will be greater if it produces noticeable side effects - something drugs usually do but not placebos. It is obvious why drugs companies will find this hard to swallow. To suggest that dummy pills work almost as well as bona fide antidepressants is provocative; to suggest that antidepressants only come out ahead in trials because of the side effects they produce is to call the emperor naked. Does it matter how a drug works as long as it gets the job done and doesn't cause unmanageable side effects? Yes and no. Drugs companies and most psychiatrists see placebo effects as ill-defined and unpredictable. But patients suffering from depression may harbour no such prejudices. They might not mind being given dummy pills that have been engineered to produce a convincing but harmless array of side effects. Where the distinction between a placebo response and a pharmacological response becomes crucial, however, is in shaping ideas about the causes of mental illnesses. Drugs like Prozac aren't just used to treat patients, they are supposed to provide psychiatrists with insights into the underlying brain chemistry of depression. But if placebo psychology not chemistry is the reason for their effectiveness, those insights become worthless. Clearly, every last detail of the study must be thoroughly investigated. One of these is the mysterious discovery that in trials, placebo responses tend to vary in line with the impact of real antidepressants (see Diagram). The researchers believe the simplest explanation for this correlation is that the drug itself is acting as a placebo. But there are other interpretations. Perhaps potent drugs enhance the effects of the placebos they are being compared with by subtly raising the expectations of everyone involved in the trials. Unfortunately there can be no final verdict until researchers start to take the placebo effect seriously. In practice, that means evaluating it instead of simply controlling for it. Prozac nation deserves nothing less. *** MOSTLY IN THE MIND Antidepressants may be little better than placebos The benefits of antidepressant drugs could be almost entirely due to the psychological boost derived from taking a pill rather than their effects on brain chemistry, say two researchers in the US. Irving Kirsch of the University of Connecticut and Guy Sapirstein of Westwood Lodge Hospital, Needham, analysed 19 studies on selected antidepressants and sedatives - including tricyclics and the newer Prozac-type drugs - involving 2318 patients. In each study, the patients had been given either an active drug or a chemically inactive placebo, and their psychological conditions had been evaluated at the beginning and end. Pharmaceuticals companies claim that antidepressants are 40 per cent more effective than placebos. But Kirsch and Sapirstein found that the drugs were only 25 per cent more effective. In addition, they suggest that even that 25 per cent could be due to an additional placebo effect derived from the side effects caused by the antidepressants, which alerted patients to the fact that they were receiving an active drug rather than a placebo. They say that the studies could have wrongly ascribed this additional effect to a chemical change induced by the drugs. Their analysis also suggests that antidepressants offer no advantage over drugs such as anxiolytics and tranquillisers, which adds fuel to the suspicion that the newer antidepressants are not as specific in their actions as their manufacturers claim. Simon Wessely, professor of psychiatry at King's College London, agrees. "There's tremendous uncertainty about how they work," he says. "The public thinks the doctors know, but they don't. Any decent psychopharmacologist will tell you this." Wessely says Kirsch and Sapirstein are right to point out that side effects can alert a patient in a trial to the fact they are getting an active drug rather than a placebo. "If patients know they're getting treatment, their expectation will be raised and with it their optimism that they will get better. It's a self-fulfilling prophecy." On the basis of this study and one that Wessely participated in (British Journal of Psychiatry, vol 172, p 227), he believes that the advantage antidepressants offer over placebos is just 15 to 20 per cent. But a psychiatrist commentating on the new analysis in the latest issue of Prevention S Treatment is fiercely critical of the paper. Donald Klein of Columbia University, New York, who played a major role in developing antidepressant treatments, says the work is flawed because the group of trials chosen was "minuscule and unrepresentative" and amounted to "a failure of peer review". Kirsch's and Sapirstein's work does not show that antidepressants have no pharmacological effect. However, Kirsch says the findings indicate "a pressing need for new methodologies in clinical trials" to discover the true extent of the placebo effect. One option might be to give some patients "active placebos" that cause side effects but have no medical effect. The researchers' results also appear in the current issue of Prevention & Treatment, the American Psychological Association's electronic journal (http://journals.apa.org/prevention/). -------------------------------------------------------------------
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