------------------------------------------------------------------- NORML Foundation Weekly News Release (Employee Fired For Legal Marinol Use Can Sue, Federal Appeals Court Rules; No Link Between Miscarriages And Marijuana Use, Study Says; County Requests Federal Okay To Conduct Medical Marijuana Study; Air Force Forbids Use Of Legal Hemp Seed Oil; Congressman Introduces Bill Banning Research On Drug War Alternatives) From: NORMLFNDTN@aol.com Date: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 18:15:58 EST Subject: NORML WPR 2/11/99 (II) NORML Foundation Weekly News Release 1001 Connecticut Ave., NW Ste. 710 Washington, DC 20036 202-483-8751 (p) 202-483-0057 (f) www.norml.org email@example.com February 11, 1999 *** Employee Fired For Legal Marinol Use Can Sue, Federal Appeals Court Rules February 11, 1999, San Francisco, CA: An airlines employee fired after failing a drug test can sue for disability discrimination, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last week. United Airlines terminated employee Spero Saridakis after he tested positive for marijuana on a random drug screen. The airline's medical review officer (MRO) refused to reverse the positive result even though Saridakis had a valid prescription for Marinol, a legal marijuana substitute. Standard drug tests do not distinguish between the use of Marinol and marijuana. Saridakis argues that his dismissal violates the Americans with Disabilities Act. Saridakis takes Marinol to treat pain and insomnia stemming from prior injuries. Without ruling on the merits of the case, the three judge panel unanimously agreed that Saridakis' claim of discrimination based on disability can be pursued in court. The ruling reverses a lower court decision dismissing Saridakis' case because he failed to contest his termination under standard union grievance procedures. "No employer has the right to discipline or dismiss an employee for using a legal drug prescribed by a physician," NORML Executive Director R. Keith Stroup, Esq. said. "This is another example of the 'War on Drugs' run amok." For more information, please contact either Keith Stroup of NORML @ (202) 483-5500 or NORML Foundation Litigation Director Tanya Kangas @ (202) 483-8751. *** No Link Between Miscarriages And Marijuana Use, Study Says February 11, 1999, Boston, MA: Researchers found no link between marijuana use by pregnant mothers and miscarriages, Reuters News Service reported last week. The study did document a strong link between tobacco consumption and miscarriages, and also showed an increased risk of miscarriage by mothers who use cocaine. NORML Board member Dr. John P. Morgan of City University of New York (CUNY) Medical School said it is unlikely marijuana plays a role in spontaneous abortions. "Previous studies of newborns, infants, and children show no consistent physical, developmental, or cognitive deficits related to prenatal marijuana exposure," he said. "Marijuana has no reliable impact on birth size, length of gestation, neurological development, or the occurrence of physical abnormalities." The study appeared in the February 4, 1999 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine. For more information, please contact either John P. Morgan @ (212) 650-8255 or Allen St. Pierre of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. *** County Requests Federal Okay To Conduct Medical Marijuana Study February 11, 1999, Redwood City, CA: San Mateo county officials will apply for federal permission to begin medical marijuana trials on human patients. Officials seek approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). NIDA is the only legal supplier of marijuana for research purposes. Last year, the Redwood City Board of Supervisors appropriated $50,000 to conduct medical marijuana research. The proposed three-year study hopes to include between 500 and 1,000 patients. County officials anticipate a federal response to their request by April 1, 1999. During the late 1970s and early 1980s, NIDA provided medical marijuana to state-sponsored research programs in seven states: California, Georgia, Michigan, New Mexico, New York, Tennessee, and Vermont. Through these programs, thousands of cancer patients found relief from legal marijuana cigarettes. NIDA discontinued supplying medical marijuana to these programs in the late 1980s, and most recently refused requests from the Massachusetts and Washington Boards of Health to allow those states to permit medical marijuana research. "NORML strongly supports San Mateo county's efforts to study the efficacy of whole smoked marijuana as a therapeutic agent," NORML Foundation Executive Director Allen St. Pierre said. "Unfortunately, NIDA and other federal agencies have established a history of regularly denying requests for medical marijuana." For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. *** Air Force Forbids Use Of Legal Hemp Seed Oil February 11,1999, Washington, D.C.: Air Force personnel may no longer use hemp seed oil products because military drug tests can not distinguish between the legal product and marijuana, the Air Force Print News reported. NORML board member Don Wirtshafter of The Ohio Hempery criticized the military's ban on legal hemp oil products. "This is not a health issue," he said. "The onus is on the drug testing industry and the employers. They are the ones putting out a faulty product that is not able to differentiate between legal consumption of hemp products and the illegal consumption of drugs." Studies reported in The Journal of Analytical Toxicology demonstrate that regular users of hemp seed oil may test positive for low levels of THC. This outcome is because trace amounts of THC-bearing flower parts sometimes adhere to the sterile seeds' outer shell. Military courts acquitted a pair of officers last year of charges they smoked marijuana after hearing evidence that they consumed hemp seed oil. "In the interest of military readiness, good order and discipline, active duty, Reserve and Air National Guard members are now prohibited from consuming any products containing hemp seed oil," Lt. Col. Greg Girard told the Air Force news wire service. He said that consumption of the products "effectively interferes" with the agency's ability to maintain a drug free force because personnel could use them to mask their use of marijuana. Hemp health products, such as hemp seed oil, are sold in nutrition stores and praised for their high concentrations of amino and fatty acids. Previously, the Hawaii Transportation Association and the New York City Department of Transportation warned employees that they will not accept hemp seed oil consumption as an excuse for a positive drug test. For more information, please contact either Don Wirtshafter of The Ohio Hempery @ (740) 662-4367 or Allen St. Pierre of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. *** Congressman Introduces Bill Banning Research On Drug War Alternatives February 11, 1999, Washington, D.C.: Freshman Rep. John Sweeney (R-New York) introduced legislation recently forbidding any federally sponsored research that would examine alternative drug policies such as harm reduction or legalization. His bill, entitled the "Anti-Drug Legalization Act," awaits action by the House Committee on Government Reform. "It is a sad day when Congress drafts legislation that seeks to silence public discourse on one of this country's most hotly debated public policies," NORML Foundation Executive Director Allen St. Pierre said. Former New York Rep. Gerald Solomon (R) introduced similar legislation unsuccessfully throughout the 1990s. For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. H.R. 278 may be found online at: http://thomas.loc.gov. - END -
------------------------------------------------------------------- Vote on prison bill causes a stir (The Oregonian says Republicans in the Oregon Senate have forced a vote today on a prison-siting bill that would reverse Governor Kitzhaber's attempt to put a new women's prison and intake center near Wilsonville, just south of Portland. The GOP legislation would instead put the 1,300-bed complex in the Eastern Oregon city of Umatilla. The governor's office says the bill gives unfair financial incentives to the Umatilla area.) The Oregonian Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ Vote on prison bill causes a stir * The Senate is set to decide today on a measure that the governor's office says gives unfair financial incentives to the Umatilla area Thursday February 11, 1999 By Jeff Mapes of The Oregonian staff SALEM -- Amid new claims that the Umatilla area will get unfair financial incentives to accept a controversial state prison, battle lines hardened Wednesday over an issue that has become a major test of wills between Gov. John Kitzhaber and Senate Republican leaders. The Senate is scheduled to vote today on a prison-siting bill that would reverse Kitzhaber's attempt to put a new women's prison and intake center in the Wilsonville area and instead put the 1,300-bed complex in the Eastern Oregon city of Umatilla. Democrats complained that Republican leaders are calling for a party-line vote against an alternative version of the bill backed by Kitzhaber that would put the prison along Day Road near Wilsonville. Senate President Brady Adams, R-Grants Pass, denied that. But it was clear supporters of the Umatilla site were pushing hard to make sure they have the votes to prevail. "The proponents and the governor both have their backs up on this one. So it's personal to them," said Sen. Neil Bryant, R-Bend, who is among several senators who remain undecided. "From a leadership standpoint, you don't want to lose a vote on a key issue this early in the session." On Wednesday, a top Kitzhaber aide criticized Republican sponsors of the bill for including provisions that would give schools in the Umatilla area state tax money to handle extra students generated by the jobs at the new prison. "They're getting a benefit no other community in the state receives for having a prison, and it's not fair," said Steve Marks, Kitzhaber's chief aide on prison issues. "They're buying support" for the prison in Umatilla, said Sen. Lee Beyer, D-Springfield. The measure, Senate Bill 3, contains no dollar amount. Instead it says the state shall give school districts "the sums reasonably necessary" to meet growth brought by the prison. Martin Davis, the Umatilla city administrator, said the local school district had asked for as much as $5 million in school construction money from the state. He noted that the bill's language also could allow school districts in surrounding areas to seek state money for their enrollment growth. Sen. Eileen Qutub, R-Beaverton, the bill's chief sponsor, said the state would have to pay about $1 million in school costs, which she called "chump change" compared with the costs of expanding public services to build a prison at the Day Road site. Although the state has picked up only the road and utility costs of new prisons, Qutub said it also should be a state responsibility to help expand schools. "I thought he cared about kids," Qutub said of Kitzhaber's opposition to money for schools. The fight between Kitzhaber and Senate Republicans has turned into one of the state's longest-running political sagas. Kitzhaber said in May 1997 that he wanted to build the complex on the grounds of the former Dammasch State Hospital in Wilsonville, a move strongly opposed by nearby residents. At the urging of legislative leaders, Kitzhaber last year agreed to study the Day Road site just north of Wilsonville and eventually agreed it was a better site. But the Day Road site also faced strong neighborhood opposition. Senate Republicans then torpedoed a scheduled special legislative session to approve money for the prison and put Qutub in charge of finding another site. Her committee decided the state could save about $91 million by putting it next to another prison under construction in Umatilla, about 180 miles east of Portland. But Kitzhaber said he wanted to reserve that site for another men's prison the state eventually needs to build -- and he said his overall plan is cheaper in the long run. On Wednesday, a handful of Day Road residents lobbied legislators to support SB3, saying Kitzhaber's compromise bill caught them by surprise. Marks unveiled the alternative last week during testimony before the Senate Business and Consumer Affairs Committee. "This is a politically sneaky way of doing business," said Dale Dickert, whose home would be condemned before a prison could be built on the Day Road property. "If we had known about (Kitzhaber's compromise proposal) before the meeting, we would have had 1,000 people in there speaking against it." Kitzhaber has said the complex should be in the Portland area, where women can be closer to their families and there are more medical and evaluation services. Kitzhaber has threatened to veto the Umatilla bill if it reaches his desk, meaning the prison-siting saga could continue. "The governor has the final word on this," said Sen. Rick Metsger, D-Welches. "He has said he's not going to allow this prison to be built in Umatilla. Do we run this merry-go-round until we get back to the starting gate, or do we solve this issue now? "It sounds like everybody wants to take the ride." Michelle Roberts of The Oregonian staff contributed to this report. You can reach Jeff Mapes at 221-8234 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marion County seeks anti-gang funds (The Oregonian says county law enforcement officials want $4.6 million from the Oregon legislature. The unpleasantness in Eugene seems to have been forgotten.) The Oregonian Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ Marion County seeks anti-gang funds * Officials want $4.6 million from the Legislature to combat gang problems, which are called the top safety concern Thursday February 11, 1999 By Cheryl Martinis Correspondent The Oregonian SALEM -- Marion County officials, alarmed by escalating gang shootings and the gang-related deaths last year of five young men, asked four local lawmakers Wednesday to request $4.6 million from the Legislature to help combat the problem. The Legislature's Emergency Board set a precedent in 1994, when the state gave Multnomah County $3.5 million to fight gangs during a two-year period. Marion County leads the state in the number of gang members per capita, said Deputy Kevin Schultz, a member of a Salem-area multiagency gang enforcement team. Altogether, Marion County has 1,132 documented gang affiliates out of the more than 5,000 gang affiliates counted statewide, according to numbers kept by Oregon State Police. Even though agencies vary in reporting practices, Schultz said Marion County clearly shoulders a disproportionate share of gang members, given its population. The county has about 8 percent of the state's population but more than 20 percent of Oregon's reported gang members. Quest for detention beds Marion County commissioners and law enforcement leaders say the $4.6 million would pay for operating 50 new juvenile detention beds during a two-year period, beds the county needs in order to convince youth that crimes or probation violations result in serious consequences. The county's detention facility has only 36 beds. At an early morning meeting Wednesday, the Marion County sheriff, the district attorney, police chiefs from Salem and Keizer, a handful of judges and others told legislators that gangs are the community's top safety concern. Salem Police Chief Walt Myers showed photographs of the bullet-riddled home where a sleeping couple survived a barrage of gunfire that pierced their walls. They lived next door to someone who had a conflict with a gang member. Senate Majority Leader Gene Derfler, R-Salem, said after the meeting that the county can ask voters for a tax increase to help solve what he views as a local rather than a state problem. "I think if a problem is acute enough, they need to sell that to local communities," he said. In order for the state to provide the money, "we're going to have to take it away from school funding or health care" or some other program, Derfler said. Courtney supportive But Sen. Peter Courtney, D-Salem, said he already is looking for beds and researching the costs. "Gangs know no boundaries," and gangsters end up in state institutions, he said in arguing that gangs are a state problem. "I think we've got to help them," Courtney said. "I don't think they're playing games. I think they're serious." State Rep. Kevin Mannix, R-Salem, said he wants to make sure the Oregon Youth Authority, which runs juvenile corrections institutions, is accepting all the offenders it should. He also asked Marion County to document how its gang problem is disproportionate to other counties. Generally, he said, "I'm supportive of what Marion County is trying to do." State Rep. Larry Wells, R-Jefferson, said he's concerned about the price because of a deluge of local money requests. Marion County voters in 1995 rejected two different proposals that included money for new juvenile facilities. The problem with going to voters at most elections now is the need to have a majority of registered voters turn out in addition to a majority of yes votes, Juvenile Department Director Larry Oglesby said. Still, the county eventually will take a bond request to voters, he said, but no date has been set. Do you have news of Marion or Polk counties? You can reach Cheryl Martinis at 503-399-8540 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
------------------------------------------------------------------- High schoolers can get $1,000 bounty under new drug "snitch" program (A press release from the Libertarian Party, in Washington, D.C., protests a plan by three high schools in Portland, Oregon, to reward teenagers who anonymously turn in other students on drug charges.) Date: Wed, 17 Feb 1999 23:22:31 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: "D. Paul Stanford" (email@example.com) From: "CRRH mailing list" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: High schoolers can get $1,000 bounty under new drug "snitch" program STOP THE SNITCHING! -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE----- NEWS FROM THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY 2600 Virginia Avenue, NW, Suite 100 Washington DC 20037 World Wide Web: http://www.lp.org/ For release: February 11, 1999 For additional information: George Getz, Press Secretary Phone: (202) 333-0008 Ext. 222 E-Mail: 76214.3676@Compuserve.com *** High schoolers can get $1,000 bounty under new drug "snitch" program WASHINGTON, DC -- A plan by three Oregon high schools to pay $1,000 bounties to teenagers who anonymously turn in other students on drug charges is a morally reprehensible program that will turn high schools into "schools for snitches," the Libertarian Party charged today. "This is the first step towards turning America's teenagers into paid informants for the government," said Steve Dasbach, the party's national director. "Are these really the kinds of values and skills we want to teach our young people?" Starting this month, students in three high school districts in Portland, Oregon, will be paid up to $1,000 for snitching on fellow students who use drugs or alcohol on school property. Under the new Crime Stoppers program, students will be given a direct, anonymous hot line to school police. But Libertarians say the program charts a direct line to a new McCarthyism, where teenagers will live in fear of being turned in -- rightly or wrongly -- to the authorities by anonymous informers eager for a cash reward. "This turn-in-your-friends-for-cash scheme at Judas Iscariot High School is a stark example of how Drug Prohibition has warped the morals of this nation," said Dasbach. "Instead of treating drug abuse as a medical problem that requires concern and compassion, this program treats drug abuse as an opportunity to earn 30 pieces of silver by ratting on your schoolmates." There are many reasons Libertarians oppose the $1,000 bounty program, said Dasbach, including... * It's ripe for abuse. "How many high school grudges will be settled by calling 1-800-BE-A-SNITCH?" asked Dasbach. "How strong will the lure of a $1,000 reward be to a student who suffered from a broken romance -- and wants revenge? For every honest report of drug abuse, how many anonymous calls will be made to settle a score?" * It will create a climate of fear and distrust. "Programs like this will cause every student to wonder: Who will be turned in next? Betrayal, snitching, and anonymous informants are not the proper recipe for creating school spirit, respect, and trust," he said. * It will funnel teenagers with drug problems into the criminal justice system instead of the medical system. "Like all Americans, Libertarians are concerned about teenage drug abuse," said Dasbach. "But reporting and arresting a teenager for smoking marijuana isn't a solution -- it's a bigger problem. For a high school student struggling with the challenges of adolescence, putting him in a jail cell and burdening him with a criminal record takes a temporary medical problem and turns it into a lifelong disaster." * It won't work. "Last week, the American Bar Association's Criminal Justice Section released a study reporting that illicit drug use in America had increased 7% from 1996 to 1997 -- while the number of people arrested on drug charges since 1992 has increased by 73%. If America could arrest its way out of the drug problem, it would have happened by now." Ironically, reports of the $1,000 high school bounty surfaced at about the same time Vice President Al Gore unveiled the Clinton Administration's new anti-drug policy, and argued that drug abuse is partly a "spiritual problem." "If Al Gore is correct, and drug abuse is a spiritual problem, we won't solve the problem by devilishly appealing to the worst in people -- and offering cash rewards to turn in your classmates," said Dasbach. "The solution to a spiritual problem is not to turn America into a nation of Soviet-style paid informants." -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE----- Version: 2.6.2 iQCVAwUBNsRMyNCSe1KnQG7RAQHWQwP9H4aF9EyMiLdrJ5Is3Idp5u8DS0y4LOGF N4ROyO82qQj4WsAH0YvxivUrlXbMDmUwK7mESUaSreFCYHXNtpBozip20JbxbvON SZi029gFPfSLFdH2gETXFPCUPROUGmQ2JYZKbt+gtkJID1ny/+8Ma34ysCjdgA71 KVt6prZoO84= =RWCR -----END PGP SIGNATURE----- The Libertarian Party 2600 Virginia Ave. NW, Suite 100 Washington DC 20037 http://www.lp.org/ voice: 202-333-0008 fax: 202-333-0072
------------------------------------------------------------------- Kubbys Knew Of Impending Arrest (Tahoe World, in Tahoe City, California, recounts the cultivation bust and legal strategy of Steve Kubby, the medical-marijuana patient/activist and 1998 Libertarian candidate for governor, and his wife, Michele.) Date: Sat, 13 Feb 1999 03:36:46 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: MMJ: Kubbys Knew Of Impending Arrest Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Kubby Source: Tahoe World (CA) Copyright: 1999 Tahoe World Pubdate: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 Page: Front Page with color photo of Steve and Michele Website: http://www.tahoe.com/world/ Forum: http://www.tahoe.com/community/forum/ Contact: email@example.com FAX: (530) 583-7109 Mail: P.O. Box 138, Tahoe City, CA 96145 Author: Patrick McCartney KUBBYS KNEW OF IMPENDING ARREST OLYMPIC VALLEY - For six months drug investigators and Steve and Michele Kubby engaged in a high-stakes game of cat and mouse. As investigators of the North Tahoe Task Force poured over details of the couple's lives for evidence of marijuana violations, the Kubbys, tipped off about the investigation, tied up the loose ends of their growing operation. Launched by an anonymous letter claiming the former Libertarian gubernatorial candidate was financing his campaign by selling marijuana, the investigation climaxed Jan. 19 with the arrest of Steve and Michele Kubby on various marijuana charges. Now, the Kubbys face charges of cultivating marijuana in their Olympic Valley home, conspiracy and possession with intent to sell. A preliminary conference is set for Feb. 22 in Tahoe Superior Court. The case promises to become the highest-profile test to date of California's Proposition 215, the initiative voters approved in 1996 authorizing the use of marijuana with a physician's approval. Steve Kubby, who has adrenal cancer and was instrumental in qualifying Proposition 215 for the ballot, openly espoused the use of medicinal marijuana in the governor's race last year. Kubby finished fourth, receiving 1 percent of the vote. According to court documents filed by the multi-agency North Tahoe Task Force, the investigation included interviews of Kubby associates, surveillance of the couple's home, checking their household trash and an analysis of their utility bills. But, no sooner than the anonymous letter from Marina del Rey piqued the interest of the drug task force, then the Kubbys were tipped off an investigation had begun. "They underestimated our political contacts, our influence and our friends in the medicinal marijuana movement," said Michele Kubby during an interview at the couple's Olympic Valley home. Producing evidence of the Kubbys' marijuana garden was easy for members of the task force, which includes law-enforcement officials from Placer County, the state of Nevada and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration. Intercepting the Kubbys' household trash, investigators found stems, seeds, leafy marijuana residue, partially smoked marijuana cigarettes and packaging for such cultivation supplies as powerful sodium light bulbs, plant vitamins and diagrams of lighting systems. Also found in the household trash were flyers addressed to law-enforcement personnel, advising them of Steve Kubby's use of medicinal marijuana, maintenance of a garden, possession of no more than 3.5 pounds of pot and his cancer condition. Christopher Cattran, a Placer County deputy district attorney assigned to the Lake Tahoe office, said he was not impressed by the Kubbys' reliance on Proposition 215. "My review of 215 is that (they had) more marijuana than necessitated by a medical condition," Cattran said Tuesday. "And there is some evidence that they furnished it to another individuals observed during the surveillance." Cattran said he visited the Kubbys' house while the task force searched the residence to get a feel for the growing operation. Investigators seized 256 plants, about half of which were seedlings, in four different rooms. When officers knocked on their door on a Tuesday morning, the Kubbys were ready. As the task force searched the house, seizing plants, lights, their computer, passports and other items, the Kubbys provided letters from a physician, attorney and the president of the Oakland Cannabis Buyers Cooperative who had inspected their garden. In the wake of their arrest, the Kubbys insist they are the perfect defendants to overcome police and prosecutor opposition to Proposition 215. They deny selling any of the marijuana they harvested, and point to their modest financial circumstances: $4,800 in savings and a 10-year-old car as proof their only income is derived from Steve Kubby's online magazine, Alpine World. "We think this will be the `Scopes Monkey Trial' of medical marijuana," said Steve Kubby. "This entire clash of cultures and ideology will be on the table." Placer County Undersheriff Steve D'Arcy said he interprets the Proposition 215 guidelines issued by former Attorney General Dan Lungren differently. "I don't think so," D'Arcy said about the Kubbys becoming a high-visibility test case. "There have been other cases before where marijuana growers were selling it and used Proposition 215 as a defense." Cattran was less certain. "We want to see justice done," Cattran said. "If it turns out ... a jury decides that 265 plants are all right, then that's justice. But if the jury decides it's just too much, justice is done then, too."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Auburn Grand Jury To Hear Kubby Marijuana Case (The Tahoe World says the district attorney in Placer County, California, will withdraw the existing indictment for marijuana cultivation and possession for sale against Steve Kubby and his wife, Michele, so the case can be presented to a criminal grand jury on Feb. 17. Dale Wood, the attorney representing the Kubbys, said the decision would deprive them of a public hearing.) Date: Fri, 12 Feb 1999 12:05:22 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US CA: MMJ: Auburn Grand Jury To Hear Kubby Marijuana Case Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Kubby Source: Tahoe World (CA) Copyright: 1999 Tahoe World Pubdate: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 Page: Front Page with color photo of Steve and Michele Website: http://www.tahoe.com/world/ Forum: http://www.tahoe.com/community/forum/ Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org FAX: (530) 583-7109 Mail: P.O. Box 138, Tahoe City, CA 96145 Author: Patrick McCartney AUBURN GRAND JURY TO HEAR KUBBY MARIJUANA CASE Former Libertarian candidate Steve Kubby's marijuana cultivation case will be presented to a criminal grand jury, a Placer County prosecutor confirmed Monday. The grand jury hearing is set for Feb. 17. With the decision, the District Attorney's Office will withdraw the existing indictment of marijuana cultivation and possession for sale against Kubby and his wife Michele. The Kubbys were arrested Jan. 19 at their Olympic Valley home by the multi-agency North Tahoe Task Force, which seized 265 plants growing in four rooms. Kubby, 52, openly espoused the use of medical marijuana for his adrenal cancer during a 1998 campaign for governor. He was instrumental in qualifying California's successful Proposition 215 in 1996, which allows the use of marijuana with a physician's approval. Christopher Cattran, a Placer County deputy district attorney, said criminal grand juries are often used by the county's prosecutors. "We view the grand jury as a body of independent people who will impartially review all the evidence and render a fair decision," Cattran said. "It's not unusual, especially in Placer County, for us to go in front of a grand jury." Dale Wood, a Truckee attorney representing the Kubbys, said the decision would deprive Kubby of a public hearing of his case. Grand jury proceedings are secret and the transcript is usually sealed. In addition, defendants are not allowed to be represented by counsel in the proceedings, which serves as an alternative for preliminary hearings by a magistrate in court. Wood called the grand jury hearing an "archaic" procedure, and said he has advised the Kubbys not to attend. The Placer County District Attorney's Office also sought a grand jury hearing for another recent medical marijuana case involving Rocklin dentist Michael Baldwin and his wife Georgia. Their case is pending.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Marijuana Never Killed Anyone, Unlike Other Drugs (A letter to the editor of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin is skeptical about a drug warrior's rhetoric. "If marijuana isn't a medicine, why are patients being supplied marijuana by the federal government, and why is the active ingredient in marijuana used as medicine in pills?") Date: Mon, 22 Feb 1999 19:16:29 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US HI: PUB LTE: MMJ: Marijuana Never Killed Anyone, Unlike Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: pacal (email@example.com) Pubdate: 11 Feb 1999 Source: Honolulu Star-Bulletin (HI) Copyright: 1999 Honolulu Star-Bulletin Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.starbulletin.com/ Author: John McClain MARIJUANA NEVER KILLED ANYONE, UNLIKE OTHER DRUGS Sandra Lacar's Jan. 30 View Point, "Medical use of marijuana must not be allowed," is confusing. If marijuana isn't a medicine, why are patients being supplied marijuana by the federal government, and why is the active ingredient in marijuana (THC) used as medicine in pills (as she herself points out)? Lacar implies that marijuana is cancerous. There is no evidence of lung cancer deaths from marijuana. Yet prescription drugs kill 100,000 people a year, compared to zero deaths from marijuana. She suggests this legislation will increase abuse rates, but gives no evidence. In fact, usage rates have dropped in California after passage of medical marijuana laws. Rhetoric confuses the issue. The facts speak for themselves. John McClain (Via the Internet)
------------------------------------------------------------------- Is Hemp Economically Sound? (MSNBC KTSM-TV, in El Paso, Texas, says an industrial hemp bill before the New Mexico legislature passed its first hurdle when the House Agriculture Committee recommended its passage. The bill has to pass through one more committee before it can go to the full house. The proposed law would allocate $50,000 to New Mexico State University to study the economic feasibility of a state hemp industry.) Date: Sat, 13 Feb 1999 10:27:11 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US NM: Is Hemp Economically Sound? 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: 2-11-1999 Source: MSNBC KTSM-TV El Paso, TX Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.msnbc.com/local/ktsm/ Author: Michelle Alegria email@example.com IS HEMP ECONOMICALLY SOUND? The word hemp makes people think of marijuana, but the fact is they're two very different things. Hemp won't get you high, and it just may be a cash cow as a commercial crop. Some states are set to look into the possibilities. 'We may be missing out on some important opprtunities to increase incomes of the plant growers.' --Prof. Rhonda Skaggs NMSU A tough fibrous plant that has been used as rope and fabric for thousands of years is beginning to take root in the minds of Americans. There's a growing movement in the U.S. to make the plant legal so it can be used to make cloth, paper and other products. It's called hemp, and the U.S. prohibits it's growth. Thirty other countries, including Canada, have made it legal to grow. Now, the New Mexico Legislature will consider a bill to allocate $50,000 to New Mexico State University to study the economic possibilities of commercially grown hemp. "You can't smoke industrial hemp, it doesn't have the same psychoactive properties as marijuana," said Rhonda Skaggs, and agricultural professor at NMSU. Experts say hemp contains only trace amounts of the chemical in marijuana that gets people high. Hemp is grown for its fiber and has long been used to make canvas and rope. Today, it's transformed into everything from cloth, paper, shirts, hats, and even necklaces. Officials in New Mexico say that's why they want to know if they could make a part of the state's agricultural economy. "With the concerns over the use of fossil fuels in the production of plastic and rope and bags and other products,.. it makes some sense to have some sort of renewable resource, a plant product, which is an annual production," said Skaggs. Some legislators say that hemp could be the cash crop of the future. Law enforcement officials say, however, it would only make their job more difficult. "The biggest problem for police is going to be looking at a budget to buy more field tests," said Sgt. Joel Cano of the Las Cruces Police Department in southern New Mexico. "The other problem is that it will tie up the officers for a little longer." Those who support hemp, say not being able to grow hemp legally is a loss to the whole country. "We may be missing out on some important opportunities to increase incomes of the plant growers," said Skaggs. The bill before the New Mexico Legislature has already passed its first hurdle. The House Agriculture Committee recommended the bill's passage. It has one more committee to go through before going before the full house.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug Money Investigation To Be Started (The Associated Press says Missouri State Auditor Claire McCaskill announced Wednesday that her office had begun an accounting of the way police departments deal with seized property. Police have been diverting from public schools millions of dollars seized in drug cases. State law requires such money seized by police to go through a state court, which usually designates the money to be used for educational purposes.)Date: Sat, 13 Feb 1999 09:24:02 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US MO: WIRE: Drug Money Investigation To Be Started Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jason Potts Pubdate: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 Source: Associated Press Copyright: 1999 Associated Press DRUG MONEY INVESTIGATION TO BE STARTED Missouri has begun an audit of the way police departments deal with seized property, State Auditor Claire McCaskill announced Wednesday. Police have been diverting from public schools millions of dollars seized in drug cases. State law requires such money seized by police to go through a state court, which usually designates the money to be used for educational purposes. But The Kansas City Star reported that police often give the money to a federal agency such as the Drug Enforcement Administration, which keeps some and returns the rest to police. Independence Police Chief Gary George said he is not concerned about an audit of his department's actions. "We're very confidant in where we're at with our forfeiture assets," George said. "We have nothing to hide. I think we can justify everything we've done. In 1997, we would have had over a million dollars in cleanup costs for methamphetamine labs, if those cases would not have gone to the federal level." George also said prosecutors, not officials in his department, decide if cases go to the state or federal level. An audit of the Kansas City Police Department was requested by Police Chief Floyd Bartch following criticism of his department's handling of forfeited drug money intended under state law to be used for schools. McCaskill said Wednesday that her audit will focus on the Kansas City department's disposition of all seized property, abandoned property and any other property that comes into its possession. "But more importantly, we want to take a statewide look at this issue," McCaskill said. McCaskill, the Jackson County prosecutor before taking office as auditor last month, said her office will seek information from all 114 Missouri counties, all elected prosecutors and the police chiefs in the state's 60 largest communities. They will be asked how they deal with all types of property that come into government possession -- seized, forfeited, abandoned and unclaimed. Some of those jurisdictions will be selected for an in-depth examination by the auditor's office, McCaskill said. She said they will include a cross-section of smaller, mid-size and larger communities, in addition to Kansas City. McCaskill said her review would include whether law enforcement agencies have been filing with her office a required annual report on property they receive as a result of getting federal money back from forfeiture. And prosecutors must give the Department of Public Safety an annual summary of all forfeiture activity of their offices. "If we could get both of those reports filed on an annual basis, it would be much easier to try to pinpoint jurisdictions that might be trying to go around the law," McCaskill said. "I have recommended that changes be made quickly that would cut off funding to law enforcement agencies and prosecutor's offices that did not get their reports on file." McCaskill also said her study would give lawmakers information they can use in making broader policy decisions related to the seized property issue. "It's very important to remember that it's not just the issue of when are local authorities calling in the federal authorities, and are they calling them for the purpose of just having them seize property, or are they calling for cooperation on a joint investigation," she said. She said there is also a question as to whether all drug forfeiture money should go to schools, or whether law enforcement agencies also should get a share. Lawmakers also need to look at statutory definitions of how property is classified, McCaskill said. "When police officers burst into a drug house and there's $10,000 cash on the table, and surprise, surprise, everyone in the house says 'It's not mine,' what is it?" she said. She said that under present laws the disposition of property coming into government possession varies depending on whether it's considered to be unclaimed, abandoned or seized. McCaskill said she hoped her office would have its work completed this summer. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Brian May (D-St. Louis), who joined McCaskill at the news conference, said the forfeiture issue is of great interest statewide. But he said that lawmakers need to "see exactly how much money we're dealing with" before they handle some of the policy aspects McCaskill referred to.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Make Pot Fine $5,000, Brookfield Judge Says (According to the Milwaukee Sentinel Journal, in Wisconsin, Judge Richard J. Steinberg says the $2,000 fine currently assessed for marijuana possession locally is "getting the attention of pot smokers," so the threat of a $5,000 maximum fine might have a bigger impact still. Judge Steinberg suggested adopting the higher fine to the city attorney's office this week. But according to Brookfield Police Chief Robert Jacobs, "I don't see any increased benefit from doing that. If a kid doesn't care about the $2,000, they're not going to care about the $5,000, either.") Date: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 08:21:13 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US WI: Make Pot Fine $5,000, Brookfield Judge Says 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: February 11, 1999 Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (WI) Copyright: 1999, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Contact: email@example.com Fax: 414-224-8280 Website: http://www.jsonline.com/ Forum: http://www.jsonline.com/cgi-bin/ubb/ultimate.cgi Author: Paul Gores of the Journal Sentinel staff MAKE POT FINE $5,000, BROOKFIELD JUDGE SAYS Confident his marijuana crackdown with maximum $2,000 fines is causing potential users to think twice, Brookfield's municipal court judge wants the stakes more than doubled. Judge Richard J. Steinberg said if the $2,000 fine is getting the attention of pot smokers, the threat of a $5,000 maximum fine might have a bigger impact still. He suggested adopting the higher fine to the city attorney's office this week. "I have gotten some feel from around the community and even outside the community . . . and they've all been supportive of it," Steinberg said, "and many people have said, 'Charge them more.' " But not everyone, including the city's police chief, is convinced such a huge jump in the fine will deter marijuana use. "To me, I don't see any increased benefit from doing that," Chief Robert Jacobs said. "If a kid doesn't care about the $2,000, they're not going to care about the $5,000, either." Before Steinberg's get-tough approach began early last year, people found with small amounts of marijuana in Brookfield were fined as little as $269. But over the past year, Steinberg has imposed the maximum $2,000 fine 16 times. He said the fine -- which is part of a crackdown that includes a mandatory court appearance and a community service sentence for those receiving lesser fines -- was spurred by what he considered a growing nonchalance among those caught with the drug. If unrepentant marijuana users can afford to buy the drug, Steinberg said, they can afford a big fine. He cited one instance in which a man willingly paid the $2,000 fine rather than accept a smaller forfeiture in conjunction with community service and drug testing. Steinberg said the $2,000 fine typically is reserved for those with indifferent attitudes or criminal records, or those with "the arrogance" not to show up in court at all. But Steinberg makes many of the offenders -- especially teens and young adults -- perform community service and get drug testing and counseling as an alternative to the maximum fine. One local official who thinks Steinberg's tough approach has had a positive impact is Elmbrook Schools Superintendent Matthew Gibson. "I think that message has gone out and it has been a deterrent," Gibson said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Two Freedom Fighters With One Stone (Diane Fornbacher, High Times magazine's Freedom Fighter of the Month for January, describes her latest arrest and that of May 1998 Freedom Fighter Julien Heicklen at Penn State University.) From: "Diane Fornbacher" (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: "CRRH mailing list" (email@example.com) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Two Freedom Fighters With One Stone Date: Fri, 12 Feb 1999 09:14:10 PST February 11, 1999 Two High Times Freedom Fighters were arrested again in State College, Pa at the Penn State University main entrance gates. First, Dr. Heicklen, professor emeritus of PSU and High Times freedom Fighter of May 1998, was arrested for using the bullhorn and refusing to cease and desist his proclamations for freedom and for the end to the drug war. Officers approached Heicklen and asked him to hand over the battery-powered sound amp device, which is not permitted by a town ordinance. Heicklen refused saying, "Go away, I am practicing my rights to protest and to gather support in a public arena." Officers then proceeded to pry the bullhorn away from Heicklen, who was adamantly gripping the straps to his device, refusing to give into the demands of authority. He then crumpled to the ground in passive resistance, forcing the officers to carry him across the street amidst screams and protests from approximately 200 supporters, most of them students at Penn State. Diane Fornbacher, co-coordinator of the protests and Jan 1999 High Times magazine Freedom Fighter, resumed the protest as Heicklen was being carried away. She picked up the bullhorn that had been carelessly tossed aside by local authorities and proceeded to condemn their actions as a full fledged violation of constitutional rights. She strongly stated that, "We, the protesters and citizens of the United States of America will never, ever go away, no matter the distance you carry us to silence our beliefs. We are sick of your intolerance and ignorance!" Soon, the authorities descended on her, taking the bullhorn from her hands and cuffed her. She then followed Dr. Heicklen's example and went limp, so that the officers were forced to carry her a block down the street to their patrol car. As she was carried away, she parodied a phrase from the movie Braveheart when she said, "They can take our weed, but they will NEVER TAKE.....OUR FREEDOM!!" to which the crowd responded with horrendous applause and cheer. Dr. Heicklen and Diane R. Fornbacher were both arraigned after about four hours in custody. Heicklen, who refused to make any movement the entire day, was arraigned in an ambumance that was parked adjacent to the magistrate's office. He was cited with two counts of disorderly conduct and one count of noise violation. Fornbacher was charged with one count of disorderly conduct and one count for noise violation. This was Heicklen's 13th arrest in a little over a year since the weekly protests started. It was Fornbacher's third. RELATED ARTICLES (Of the following links--none of the reporters who wrote the story were present at the protest and failed miserably to capture the excitement that transpired. Neither paper found the event important enough to include on the front page. Maybe when their freedom of speech is violated personally, they will act differently. I encourage all of you to write letters to the editors of the following toilet papers.) www.collegian.psu.edu/archive/1999/02/02-12-99tdc/02-12-99dnews-5.asp http://www.centredaily.com/news/story21.htm *** Dr. Heicklen can be reached at : email@example.com Diane R. Fornbacher can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org "Rise like lions after slumber in invanquishable number -- Shake your chains to earth like dew which in sleep had fallen on you -- ye are many -- they are few." -- Percy Shelley FEAR IS THE ELIXIR OF THOSE WHO SEEK TO ERADICATE FREE THOUGHT & ACTION!
------------------------------------------------------------------- Man Arrested A Second Time For Marijuana Operation (A cautionary tale revealing typical American journalistic objectivity, by MSNBC WMSV-TV, Channel 4 in Nashville, Tennessee, says the station informed on Terry Barbour, a somewhat naive local cannabis retailer and enthusiast, after it interviewed him following his arraignment on pot charges, and taped him and friends using "drugs" in the news crews' presence. Barbour is now being held in the Putnam County jail without bond.) Date: Sat, 13 Feb 1999 10:18:08 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US TN: Man Arrested A Second Time For Marijuana Operation 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: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 Author: Francene Cucinello Source: MSNBC WMSV-TV Nashville TN Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.msnbc.com/local/WSMV/ MAN ARRESTED A SECOND TIME FOR MARIJUANA OPERATION One week ago police arrested a man who sells marijuana, he says that it's his "mission." Two days after the arrest, Terry Barbour bonded out of jail. Channel Four sent a crew back to Putnam County to see if he's back to business as usual. Most days Terry Barbour works odd jobs, but not Thursdays. On Thursdays Barbour says he sells marijuana. "I make my money selling pot. I sell to anybody, I don't card nobody." Last Thursday drug agents busted Barbour confiscating coolers full of marijuana. Police seized 200-thousand dollars worth. You'd think that would be enough to make Barbour stop selling. It wasn't. "I have to. Somebody's gotta take care of this plant." Barbour and his pals say providing pot is their "responsibility." He says that he doesn't think he is doing anything wrong. "Big deal big deal. So what, they made it illegal. Big deal." They say hemp is one of the most useful plants on the planet whether it's spun into fabric, used as seed, or smoked. Barbour says pot paid for a friend's hearing aids and helps another deal with chronic pain. As for him? "I like the buzz. In it for the buzz. I can get by on a joint or 2 a day but out here we'll smoke 3 or 4 or 5." During the time our crew was talking to Barbour and his friends Thursday, they had full knowledge our camera was rolling, but still openly used drugs. We felt it was our civic obligation to report what we saw to the authorities. We gave a statement to the district attorney. Late Thursday afternoon they searched Barbour's house and arrested him again. He's charged with possession of marijuana with intent of resale and is being held without bond in the Putnam County jail.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Federal `Drug War' Strategy Is Bound To Fail - Again (San Jose Mercury News columnist Joanne Jacobs says this year's Clinton administration blueprint for the war on some drug users reveals the same old strategy, and it's likely to produce the same old results. Despite this year's $17.8 billion budget, the cost to eradicate coca crops in South America keeps going up, while the street price of cocaine keeps going down. The one strategy that works - treatment for addicts - gets only a fraction of the funding.) Date: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 08:25:00 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US CA: COLUMN: Federal `Drug War' Strategy Is Bound To Fail - Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Marcus/Mermelstein Family (email@example.com) Pubdate: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA) Copyright: 1999 Mercury Center Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/ Author: Joanne Jacobs FEDERAL `DRUG WAR' STRATEGY IS BOUND TO FAIL -- AGAIN Treatment Is The Best Weapon `WE must mount an all-out effort to banish crime, drugs and disorder and hopelessness from our streets once and for all,'' said Vice President Al Gore Monday, announcing this year's plan for the war on drugs. It's the same old strategy, and it's likely to produce the same old results. Two-thirds of $17.8 billion will be aimed at reducing the supply of illegal drugs, with more money for South American militaries, Coast Guard patrols, border guards, federal drug enforcement agents and local cops. One third is aimed at suppressing demand, which includes anti-drug ads, school programs, drug testing and treatment. Adolescent drug use, on the rise since 1992, leveled off last year, according to the University of Michigan's Monitoring the Future survey. The administration is touting that as a sign of success -- and predicting drug use and availability will fall 25 percent by 2002, 50 percent by 2007. Drug-related crime will fall by 30 percent in eight years, says drug czar Barry McCaffrey. Health and social costs of drug abuse will decline by 25 percent. The Pleasantville scenario sounds nice. But it's not very realistic. As long as Americans are willing to pay to get high, farmers in desperately poor countries will grow drug crops, smugglers will sneak drugs across the border and dealers will get the product to customers. Helicopters and herbicides won't change that. Coca cultivation is down in Peru and Bolivia, McCaffrey said. But it's up sharply in Colombia. The budget to eradicate coca crops in South America keeps going up, while the street price of cocaine keeps going down, the Drug Policy Foundation reports. ``The street cost of cocaine in 1996 (the most recent year for which figures are available) was one-third of what it was in 1981, when the government spent virtually no money on interdiction and eradication efforts.'' School kids who want drugs know where to find them. Over the last five years, it's become easier for high school students to acquire most drugs, the Monitoring the Future survey found. McCaffrey touted a $195 million media campaign to tell kids that drug use is ``wrong'' and dangerous. In one ad, a young woman with an iron skillet bashes a kitchen to bits, illustrating that drug abuse not only fries your brain, it also hurts everyone around you. ``Will this persuade high school students not to use drugs?'' I asked my daughter and her friend. ``OK, Mom. I'll give up my plans to become a heroin addict,'' my daughter said. After years of drug warnings in school, teenagers have stopped listening, her friend said. They know the dangers. The question is whether they care. There's no evidence ads reduce drug use, said Scott Ehlers, senior analyst at the Drug Policy Foundation in Washington, D.C. ``I hope so,'' he said, ``but there hasn't been much research. We don't know.'' There is lots of research, including a 1998 University of Illinois study, showing that DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) doesn't reduce students' use of drugs. DARE is still used in 70 percent of school districts, and the federal funds continue to flow. The one strategy that works -- treatment for addicts -- gets only a fraction of the funding. Every dollar spent on treatment is 23 times more effective in lowering drug abuse rates than a dollar spent on destroying foreign crops, RAND concluded in a 1994 study. One treatment dollar is the equivalent of $11 spent trying to stop drugs at the border or $7 spent on police and prisons. Providing treatment lowers long-term drug use, criminal activity, health problems, homelessness and family break-up, government research shows. And it's cheap, compared to locking people up in jail. Drug and alcohol treatment is needed urgently to prevent child abuse and neglect, concludes a two-year study by the Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University. ``Most parents who need treatment don't receive it and much of the treatment is not appropriate for these predominantly female parents.'' In a 1997 survey, child welfare agencies estimated that substance abuse treatment was needed for two out of three parents and one out of three pregnant women involved with the child welfare system. Treatment was available for only 31 percent of parents and 20 percent of pregnant women. The plan calls for ``closing the treatment gap'' but the money allocated won't come close to meeting the need. ``We're creating a system where you have to get into the criminal justice system to get into treatment,'' Ehlers said. The plan stresses drug testing for parolees, so they can be sent back to prison for backsliding, and more drug treatment for inmates. Prison rehab has been shown to cut recidivism. But why wait? In announcing the plan, Gore spoke eloquently of the despair that underlies drug abuse. ``If young people have emptiness in their lives, if they have a lack of respect for the larger community of which they are a part, if they don't find ways to feel connected to the adults who are in the community, if they feel there is phoniness and hypocrisy and corruption and immorality, then they are much more vulnerable,'' he said. That's very true. So we need a drug strategy that rejects the phoniness, hypocrisy, corruption and immorality of the war on drugs. Joanne Jacobs is a member of the Mercury News editorial board. Her column appears on Mondays and Thursdays.
------------------------------------------------------------------- MP's Marijuana Motion Gathering Steam (The Toronto Globe & Mail notes Bloc Quebecois Member of Parliament Bernard Bigras is sponsoring a motion in the House of Commons asking the government to study the benefits of medical marijuana. Mr. Bigras is suggesting that Health Canada conduct a three-year research program involving 400 to 600 patients before considering legalizing the substance. His motion will force the government to come up with a position on this issue before it comes to a vote in May.) From: email@example.com (Matt Elrod) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Canada: MP'S MARIJUANA MOTION GATHERING STEAM Date: Wed, 17 Feb 1999 14:34:06 -0800 Lines: 33 Newshawk: Chris Clay Source: Globe & Mail Pubdate: February 11, 1999 Author: Daniel Leblanc, Parliamentary Bureau, Ottawa MP'S MARIJUANA MOTION GATHERING STEAM Last spring, Bloc Quebecois MP Bernard Bigras spoke to a constituent suffering from AIDS who risked being jailed for six months every time he smoked marijuana to alleviate his daily nausea, vomiting and pain. Mr. Bigras is now sponsoring a motion in the House of Commons asking the government to study the benefits of marijuana in treating the symptoms of some illnesses. Mr. Bigras is suggesting that Health Canada conduct a three-year research program involving 400 to 600 patients before considering legalizing the substance. Mr. Bigras's motion will force the government to come up with a position on this issue before it comes to a vote in May. He currently has the support of the Bloc, NDP and Progressive Conservative caucasus, and of influential doctors in the Liberal caucus, including MP Carolyn Bennett and cabinet minister Hedy Fry. Mr. Bigras said in an interview yesterday that he is aware that he is raising a controvertial issue. "I don't expect that within six months of this motion, the government will be fored to legalize marijuana," Mr. Bigras said. "I understand that there has to be research before marijuana is approved as a drug. I'm not stupid enough to think that the government would allow people to grow marijuana in their backyard."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Howard's Drug War Strategy Misfires (An op-ed in the Age, in Melbourne, notes the Australian Prime Minister claimed in Parliament on Tuesday that his Government's "tough on drugs" strategy was working. The evidence? Howard quoted figures to show that the authorities were making record seizures of illicit drugs. But a cap of heroin on the streets of Melbourne is now about the same price as a slab of full-strength beer. For two or three teenagers looking for a buzz or oblivion, heroin represents good value by comparison to booze - and it's easier to obtain. The war on drugs has failed. The function of society is to ensure that experimentation with drugs occurs as safely as possible and, for those who become addicted, supply and distribution is organised so that the addicts can lead a productive life outside crime.) Date: Fri, 12 Feb 1999 00:16:10 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: Australia: OPED: Wire: Howard's Drug War Strategy Misfires Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Russell.Ken.KW@bhp.com.au (Russell, Ken KW) Pubdate: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 Source: Age, The (Australia) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.theage.com.au/ Copyright: 1999 David Syme & Co Ltd HOWARD'S DRUG WAR STRATEGY MISFIRES A CAP of heroin on the streets of Melbourne is now about the same price as a slab of full-strength beer. For two or three teenagers looking for a buzz or oblivion, heroin represents good value by comparison to booze. Heroin is readily available, it's cheap and its purity is high compared to a few years ago. And yet our Prime Minister claimed in Parliament on Tuesday that his Government's "tough on drugs" strategy is working. The evidence? Howard quoted figures to show that the authorities are making record seizures of illicit drugs. According to Howard, in the first seven months of 1998-99, federal agencies have seized five times the amount of heroin and more than twice the amount of cocaine than the yearly average over the previous seven years. But this tells us nothing about total imports and the supply of hard drugs on the streets. If the higher rate of interdiction led to less heroin and cocaine on the streets, two things would happen: prices would rise and purity would fall as dealers diluted supplies. In some parts of Melbourne, it is easier for an underage teenager to get a cap of heroin than a slab of beer or a packet of smokes. According to the Penington Report (the Premier's Drug Advisory Council, 1996), while there is no reliable estimate of the amount of hard drugs imported into Australia, interdiction is estimated to capture between 3 and 10per cent of total imports. Extrapolating from Penington, this means that unless there has been a significant improvement in the interdiction rate, all Howard has shown is that now there is about 10 times the heroin and four times the cocaine being sold compared to a few years ago. It has been blindingly obvious for more than a decade that the war on drugs has been lost. Zero tolerance and intensification of the criminalisation of drug users is simply a means of filling up the privatised prison system. In 1997, after a series of teenage heroin overdose-related deaths in Canberra, there was strong community support for a restricted heroin trial for addicts, which gained the approval of most state health ministers and the federal Health Minister, Michael Wooldridge. The program was vetoed by Howard after campaigns by the Murdoch press and the leading Sydney "shock jocks", Alan Jones and John Laws. According to Penington, the global turnover in illicit drugs is in the order of $600-$800 billion a year, or the equivalent of 10 per cent of the value of world trade. The value of the illicit drug trade in Australia was about $7 billion a year in 1997, according to an estimate by Access Economics. Best estimates (quoted in Local Government and the Problem with Heroin, published by the Maribyrnong City Council) are that 250,000 of the population used heroin in 1996 (75,000 in Victoria), and about 60,000 (15,000 in Victoria) were dependent or addicted users. The numbers have continued to grow. Hard drugs are big business. The business is sustained by occasional or recreational users rather than addicts. The business is highly profitable because of its illegality. According to Penington, despite being highly addictive, heroin in its pure form is relatively non-toxic and causes little damage to body tissue and other organs. Addicts who can afford a regular supply of pure heroin are able to lead normal, productive lives. The damage to addicts comes from the impurities used to adulterate the pure heroin, the criminal lifestyle led by most addicts in order to pay for their habit, dirty needles, and lack of quality control inherent in illegal distribution. Intravenous drug use is ugly and the prostitution, crime and death associated with illicit hard drugs can easily be exploited by cynical politicians and talkback radio hosts to create a frisson of fear in the minds of the middle class. This can then be translated into votes and ratings. The truth is more prosaic. Death rates from alcohol, tobacco and road trauma are all much higher than from illicit drug use. Youth will experiment with drugs irrespective of the attitudes and laws of the older generation. The function of society is to ensure that the experimentation is as safe as possible and, for those who become addicted, supply and distribution is organised so that the addicts can lead a productive life outside crime.
------------------------------------------------------------------- U.S. Troubled By Interpol's Myanmar Drug Meeting (According to Reuters, the United States said Thursday it would not attend an Interpol anti-narcotics meeting in Myanmar because it believes Yangon may use the event to give a false picture of its drug suppression efforts.) Date: Fri, 12 Feb 1999 23:33:06 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US: Wire: US Troubled By Interpol's Myanmar Drug Meeting Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: General Pulaski Pubdate: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 Source: Reuters Copyright: 1999 Reuters Limited. U.S. TROUBLED BY INTERPOL'S MYANMAR DRUG MEETING BANGKOK, - The United States said on Thursday it had decided not to attend an Interpol anti-narcotics meeting in Myanmar as it believes Yangon may use the event to give a false picture of its drug suppression efforts. It said Interpol's decision to hold the conference in Yangon was "troubling" and Washington wanted to avoid misunderstanding of its policy towards Myanmar. "The United States believes the Burmese regime could use the conference to create the false impression that it demonstrates international approval...for its counter-narcotics and anti-crime efforts," a U.S. embassy spokesman quoted a State Department statement as saying. "Interpol's decision to hold this year's conference in Rangoon and to structure an agenda that largely overlooks key U.S. counter-narcotics concerns in the region, and in particular with Burma, is troubling," it said. "The U.S. government will not send anyone to the meeting. and would prefer that it be held in another location." Myanmar is one of the world's leading producers of heroin and overseas officials working to stem a flood of narcotics from its refineries have expressed doubts about the military government's commitment to eradicating the menace. The U.S. statement said Yangon's counter-narcotics efforts, "while improving, are far from what is necessary". In addition, Myanmar "persists in its disregard for political and human rights", it said. Had Interpol sought U.S. views, Washington would have advocated both a different venue and agenda for the conference, concentrating more on narcotics issues specific to Myanmar, "including money laundering, corruption, smuggling and crop destruction and substitution", the statement said. Several European countries have said they will not attend the meeting. On Wednesday, Myanmar said it greatly regretted decisions by the United States and Britain to boycott the conference. It said that as two of the largest markets for heroin in the world, they had a "special responsibility" to take part. The Australia Burma Council, a Sydney-based non-governmental organisation, has criticised Australia's planned participation, saying it would merely serve the propaganda interests of a "brutal, incompetent and corrupt" government.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Weekly Action Report on Drug Policies, Year 5, No. 6 (A summary of European and international drug policy news, from CORA, in Italy) Date: Sun, 14 Feb 1999 23:48:17 +0100 To: CORAFax (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: CORAFax (email@example.com) Subject: CORAFax #6 (EN) Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org ANTIPROHIBITIONIST OF THE ENTIRE WORLD .... Year 6 #, February 11 1999 *** Weekly Action Report on Drug Policies Edited by the CORA - Radical Antiprohibitionist Coordination, federated to - TRP-Transnational Radical Party (NGO, consultive status, I) - The Global Coalition for Alternatives to the Drug War *** director: Vincenzo Donvito All rights reserved *** http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet mailto:email@example.com *** NEWS FROM THE WORLD *** 000479 04/02/99 E.U. / ITALY CONSUMERS CORRIERE DELLA SERA A research by the Superior Institute of Health says that among young people one out of four has smoked a joint at least once, and one out of twenty has sniffed cocaine. *** 000480 07/02/99 E.U. / GB CONSUMERS THE TIMES A Government report says that crack users that are over 50 years old have doubled in 1997. It seems that they use this drug to feel young and to reduce phisical pain and depression. *** 000482 05/02/99 E.U. / NL INITIATIVE NEUE ZUERCHER Z. On the third of February the Dutch Parliament has approved the beginning of an experiment of controlled distribution of heroin directed to 750 critical addiction cases. This widens the program started in summer 1998. *** 000483 06/02/99 E.U. / ITALY / VENICE INITIATIVE IL MESSAGGERO 06-07/02 / CORRIERE DELLA SERA 07/02 While the organizers of 'Forum Droghe' say that in Europe programs of controlled distribution of heroin are gathering lots of success, the Italian Minister of Justice participates at their congress by sending a message that simply says 'repression is not the only answer', and the Minister of Social Solidarity reconfirms her opposition to those methods. *** 000481 05/02/99 E.U. / SPAIN JURISPRUDENCE EL PAIS Inviting someone to consume any kind of drug is a crime and is punishable with imprisonment. This is what the Tribunal Supremo withholds, confirming a first degree sentence. *** 000484 05/02/99 ASIA WAR ON DRUGS FRANKFURTER China, Laos, Myamar, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Japan have decided to intensifie collaboration against drug traffic. Pino Arlacchi, although, has criticised Japan for its structural and organisational deficiencies, and has asked that it enacts more severe laws. *** 000485 08/02/99 E.U. WAR ON DRUGS DER SPIEGEL Up to this day drug traffickers were hunted by sea, air and road. Having seen the insuccess of this, UE Custom Officials are planning to concentrate on railways. They are convinced that Asiatic drugs travel on trucks and are then put on trains just before they have to pass the frontiers. *** 000486 09/02/99 AMERICA / USA WAR ON DRUGS FINANCIAL TIMES / SUEDDEUTSCHE Z. The Government is committed to reduce the drug problem to half within year 2007. This will cost, only this year, 18 billion USD. The plan stands on five principles: informing young people, diminishing the number of addicts, breaking the tie between drugs and crime, stregthening frontier controls and reducing supply. *** CORAFax 1999 "To be removed from further mailings simply click on the link below; or just (only) type Remove in the subject!" mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org?subject=CORAFax_Remove-Me-NOW!
------------------------------------------------------------------- DrugSense Weekly, No. 85 (The original summary of drug policy news from DrugSense opens with the weekly Feature Article - Scapegoating teens buttresses drug war, by Mike Males. The Weekly News in Review features several articles about Drug War Policy, including - Hitting a wall of opposition; Welfare drug test plan gets mixed reaction; Court files: truth or DARE; and, The erosion of our rights. Articles about Law Enforcement & Prisons include - Drug arrests continue; Westbound I-40 pours drug cash on police; Feds pay drug case witness $2 million; Is plea bargaining an illegal tactic?; and, The prison craze and the crime rate. Articles about Medical Marijuana include - Supporters are grim as Chavez led away to jail; Kubbys prepared for marijuana arrests; Not-so-secret farm keeps growing; and, Hard data trickles in as scientists study marijuana. International News articles include - Mexico turns to high-tech tools in war on drugs; Mcleish set to create a task force of drug busters; Chirac calls for EU to harmonise anti-drug laws; Heroin overdose deaths hit a record 600; and, Anti-drug aid endangered. The weekly Hot Off The 'Net points your browser to Pritchett cartoons on drug policy; and the "face lift" at the Legalize-USA site. Volunteer of the Month: Mike Gogulski. The Quote of the Week cites Stanislaw Lec.) Date: Thu, 11 Feb 1999 13:20:08 -0800 To: email@example.com From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org) Subject: DrugSense Weekly, February 11,1998 #085 *** DRUGSENSE WEEKLY *** DrugSense Weekly, February 11,1998 #085 A DrugSense publication http://www.drugsense.org This Publication May Be Read On-line at: http://www.drugsense.org/dsw/1999/ds99.n85.html TO SUBSCRIBE, UNSUBSCRIBE, DONATE OR UPDATE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS PLEASE SEE THE INFORMATION AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS NEWSLETTER Please consider writing a letter to the editor using the email addresses on any of the articles below. Send a copy of your LTE to MGreer@mapinc.org. *** TABLE OF CONTENTS: * Feature Article Scapegoating Teens Buttresses Drug War Mike Males * Weekly News in Review Drug War Policy- (1) Hitting A Wall of Opposition (2) Welfare Drug Test Plan Gets Mixed Reaction (3) Court Files: Truth or DARE (4) The Erosion of Our Rights Law Enforcement & Prisons- (5) Drug Arrests Continue (6) Westbound I-40 Pours Drug Cash on Police (7) Feds Pay Drug Case Witness $2 Million (8) Is Plea Bargaining an Illegal Tactic? (9) The Prison Craze and the Crime Rate Medical Marijuana- (10) Supporters Are Grim as Chavez Led Away to Jail (11) Kubbys Prepared for Marijuana Arrests (12) Not-so-Secret Farm Keeps Growing (13) Hard Data Trickles In As Scientists Study Marijuana International News- (14) Mexico Turns to High-Tech Tools in War On Drugs (15) Mcleish Set to Create a Task Force of Drug Busters (16) Chirac Calls for EU to Harmonise Anti-Drug Laws (17) Heroin Overdose Deaths Hit a Record 600 (18) Anti-Drug Aid Endangered * Hot Off The 'Net Pritchett Cartoons on drug policy Legalize-USA Site Gets a "Face Lift" * Volunteer of the Month Mike Gogulski. * Quote of the Week Stanislaw Lec *** FEATURE ARTICLE Scapegoating Teens Buttresses Drug War by Mike Males As drug-policy historian David Musto points out in Scientific American, anti-drug crusades concoct "a linkage between the drug and a feared or rejected group within society." Early-century wars against marijuana, cocaine, and alcohol sought to tie these drugs to Hispanics, blacks, and southern European immigrants, making wars on drugs part of wars against unpopular groups. Similarly, as the modern War on Drugs escalated in the 1990s, its nonstop denigration of today's out-group, young people, has intensified. The new White House/Partnership for a Drug-Free America ad campaign and incessant official statements depict teenagers as the nation's primary, if not sole, drug menace. In truth, drug overdose, hospital emergency, and addiction treatment statistics clearly show the only group in the United States with a significant drug problem is aging baby boomers. Heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and alcohol abuse has exploded among 30- and 40-agers over the last two decades. The biggest risk children and teens face from drugs is not their own use, but violence from addicted grownups and the drug supply trades the surging middle-aged demand fueled. But the baby-boomer crisis is ignored by War on Drugs officials for the same reason medical-marijuana proposals are castigated: both manifest drug use among respectable middle-agers and the elderly, disrupting the campaign to equate drugs with fearsome adolescents. Without a disliked and powerless group to attack, the drug war risks losing focus and collapsing. Fabricating the image of a teenage crisis requires massive official deception, since there is no evidence of a major teen drug problem. The youth-heroin scare (invented by the Partnership in 1996 as a fundraising ploy) is a complete hoax. Of 8,000 youths surveyed by NIDA's 1997 National Household Survey, a whopping 25 had used heroin in the previous year. The latest Drug Abuse Warning Network figures show that only 22 of the 4,000 heroin-related deaths in 1996 and 1% of the hospital emergency treatments for heroin abuse in 1997 were adolescents. Adolescents comprised just 70 of the 13,000 cases in which heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, or alcohol mixed with drugs were implicated in deaths -- in fact, just 182 of the 22,300 cases in which any kind of drug or drug- alcohol combination caused a fatality. Nor does teenage drug and alcohol experimentation suggest a future problem. Surprisingly, consistent evidence shows that both society and the individual are much safer with a drug or drink in the hands of a 17 year-old than in the hands of a 40 year-old. The reason: teenagers tend to use milder drugs (beer and marijuana, rather than heroin or whisky) more moderately and in safer settings. A 30- or 40-ager is twice as likely to kill or injure in a drunken driving crash, five times more likely to die from "binge" drinking, and a dozen times more likely to overdose on drugs than is a high-school youth. The above realities belie both the official/media fear campaign, which relies on rare, sensational anecdotes and slapdash surveys to paint a dire picture of teenage peril, and drug-policy reformers who argue that alcohol and marijuana are acceptable for adults to partake but too dangerous for teens. The ability of modern teenagers to avoid the drug crises plaguing their elders is phenomenal. In Los Angeles County, population 9.5 million, there were ZERO teenage deaths from heroin, cocaine (including crack), or meth in 1997. However, 300 L.A. adults died from these drugs. Similar to statewide and national patterns, 90% were over age 30. The most fascinating trend occurred in San Francisco, a city which for decades has harbored the nation's worst drug malaise. From 1990 through 1997, 1,500 San Franciscans died from drugs, a rate triple that of other big cities. But only 17 were under age 20, and 10 of these were not local residents. Only 1% of the city's drug-death and 2% of its hospital drug- emergency toll are teenagers. Predictably, the occasional teenage or young-adult tragedy is wildly hyped by the press and authorities seeking to discredit San Francisco's liberal medical marijuana and marijuana possession policies as perils to the young. In truth, the city's minimal teen drug abuse shows that de facto legalization and harm-reduction strategies pose no danger to youths. The best explanation for teenagers' very low rates of drug mishap, particularly in drug-infested cities such as San Francisco, L.A., and New York, seems to be reaction against the visible epidemic of drug abuse among their parents' generation that has steered youths who might otherwise be of high risk toward more careful practices. In a rational drug debate, the destructive adolescent scapegoating that sustains the War on Drugs would be replaced by inquiry as to how teens' surprisingly healthy trends can be learned from and reinforced. *** Mike Males, author of Framing Youth: Ten Myths About the Next Generation (Common Courage Press, 1996), is a social ecology doctoral candidate at the University of California, Irvine. Mike Males 1105 Palo Verde Road Irvine, CA 92612 Tel 949/856-0419 Fax 949/824-2056 Email firstname.lastname@example.org School of Social Ecology, Doctoral Program University of California, Irvine *** WEEKLY NEWS IN REVIEW *** Domestic News- Policy *** COMMENT: (1-4) Sadly, Americans seem more intent on keeping government snoops out of their bank records than out of their children's school lockers. The proposed banking changes reported just a week ago provoked so much outrage they now appear DOA in Congress. In contrast, a requirement that Oklahoma welfare recipients undergo screening and drug testing will probably pass, despite ACLU opposition. In response to his acknowledgement that he lied, D.A.R.E. shifted its attack from Steven Glass, to Rolling Stone, the magazine that published his bogus articles. This case promises to grow into a major effort to discredit "legalizers." Finally, an op-ed in the Oakland Tribune is all the more frightening because its conservative author treats as rational some police procedures that would have been considered unthinkable just a few years ago. *** (1) HITTING A WALL OF OPPOSITION A proposal that would force banks to keep closer track of customers' transactions and report them to the government will be rewritten or even scrapped because of public outcry, federal regulators said Wednesday in Chicago. [snip] Pubdate: Thur, 4 Feb.. 1999 Source: Chicago Tribune (IL) Copyright: 1999 Chicago Tribune Company Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.chicagotribune.com/ Forum: http://www.chicagotribune.com/interact/boards/ Author: Melissa Wahl Section: Business URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n132.a09.html *** (2) WELFARE DRUG TEST PLAN GETS MIXED REACTION The ACLU Says It's An Invasion Of Privacy. OKLAHOMA CITY -- The ACLU is questioning the Department of Human Services' plans to start drug testing welfare recipients. [snip] Earlier this week, DHS Director Howard Hendrick said his agency in mid-March will require welfare recipients and those seeking aid to take a written exam to determine their propensity to abuse drugs and alcohol. The results will be used to determine which clients will be required to give a urine sample for analysis. Welfare recipients who don't cooperate will be denied benefits. [snip] Source: Tulsa World (OK) Copyright: 1999, World Publishing Co. Website: http://www.tulsaworld.com/ Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Author: Barbara Hoberock, World Capitol Bureau Pubdate: 31 Jan 1999 URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n138.a06.html *** (3) COURT FILES: TRUTH OR DARE The drug education group DARE is suing Rolling Stone magazine for $50 million, alleging that a critical article written by disgraced whiz kid journalist Stephen Glass was more fiction than fact, not to mention libelous. [snip] Pubdate: Sun, 07 1999 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Copyright: 1999 Los Angeles Times. Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Forum: http://www.latimes.com/HOME/DISCUSS/ Author: ANN W. O'NEILL URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n141.a06.html *** (4) THE EROSION OF OUR RIGHTS TO what lengths may police go -- reasonably -- to crack down on criminals? That is the thorny question raised by several recent, controversial actions taken (or contemplated) by keepers of the peace in several municipalities throughout the country. In Buena Park, for instance, the local constabulary set up a checkpoint to identify individuals driving with invalid licenses. [snip] Ramona Ripston, executive director of the ACLU's Los Angeles office, says that Buena Park cops were violating motorists' rights because officers "have to have a reason for stopping someone like that." Buena Park police disagree. "If we were stopping every car, then we might run into problems," said Sgt. Joe Englehardt. "We are operating under the same laws that you run into with drunk-driving checkpoints." [snip] For similar reasons, the civil libertarian in me also has qualms about a proposal by New York City Police Commissioner Howard Safir that the Big Apple's finest take a DNA sample from every person arrested in the five boroughs. Pubdate: Thu, 04 Feb. 1999 Source: Oakland Tribune (CA) Copyright: 1999 MediaNews Group, Inc. and ANG Newspapers Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Address: 66 Jack London Sq., Oakland, CA 94607 Website: http://www.newschoice.com/newspapers/alameda/tribune/ Author: Joseph Perkins,Columnist, San Diego Union Tribune URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n129.a03.html *** Law Enforcement & Prisons *** COMMENT: (5-9) Where police empowerment is leading can be seen in two articles from rural Arkansas; they provide an overview of how federally sponsored combined "task forces" pull low level drug retailers and their customers into the maw of the criminal justice system, relieving them of automobiles and spare cash along the way. Once ensnared as prisoners, they face daunting ordeals in court, especially if poor and/or black; conviction is the name of the game and the prosecution holds most of the cards. Wachtel's challenge to plea-bargaining is still alive, but don't bet on the Supreme Court to uphold it. No single tactic is more essential to obtaining drug convictions and keeping our state and federal prisons in a growth mode. The final article effectively restates a theme being sounded over and over by our best op-ed writers: aggressive pursuit of the drug war is turning the nation's prison system into an insupportable abomination. *** (5) DRUG ARRESTS CONTINUE Drug arrests continued Thursday in the wake of the warrant roundup Wednesday of alleged drug dealers targeted after a three-month, under cover 21st Judicial District Drug Task Force investigation. By late Thursday morning, the two-officer warrant teams composed of Van Buren police officers and state troopers had served 20 warrants and made two additional felony drug . [snip] Arrests released by the Van Buren Police Department as of Thursday included Robert Lewis, 18, for delivery of marijuana; Patrick Dillard, 19, for delivery of methamphetamine; Bradley Bennett, 18, for delivery of cocaine; Danny Reed, 43, for delivery of methamphetamine; Jcena Green, 19, delivery of marijuana; Barbara Pickern, 38, possession of methamphetamine, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia; . [snip] Pubdate: 5 Feb. 1999 Source: Southwest Times Record (AR) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.swtimes.com/ Author: Mary L. Crider - Times Record URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n135.a01.html *** (6) WESTBOUND I-40 POURS DRUG CASH ON POLICE WEST MEMPHIS -- Routine traffic stops in Crittenden County are yielding sizable hauls of confiscated cash, indicating that drug trafficking along the corridors of Interstates 40 and 55 is on the rise, police say. Four routine traffic checks in the past month have allowed officers to collect more than $1,130,084 in cash. And law enforcement authorities say the money may be small change in the drug trade. [snip] Pubdate: Fri 5 Feb. 1999 Source: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (AR) Copyright: 1999, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Inc. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.ardemgaz.com/ Author: Kenneth Heard - Arkansas Democrat-Gazette URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n131.a06.html *** (7) FEDS PAY DRUG CASE WITNESS $2 MILLI0N Worked Undercover For Two Years LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The key undercover witness in the nation's biggest drug money laundering case was paid more than $2 million to help prosecutors, according to testimony. [snip] Pubdate: Mon, 1 Feb. 1999 Source: Associated Press Copyright: 1999 Associated Press URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n121.a03.html *** (8) IS PLEA BARGAINING AN ILLEGAL TACTIC? LAWYER SAYS THE AGE-OLD PRACTICE GIVES PROSECUTORS AN UNFAIR ADVANTAGE. Wichita, Kan., lawyer John V. Wachtel didn't know he would be starting a legal trend when he challenged the long-standing practice of prosecutors offering deals in exchange for testimony. He just believed he was right and hoped he could convince three judges on the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. [snip] An appeal before the 12 judges of the 10th Circuit in Denver followed. This month, in a 9-3 decision, the judges handed prosecutors a victory by finding that the statute prohibiting someone from offering anything of value for testimony doesn't apply to them. But the issue Wachtel raised in the case of a woman convicted of money laundering and conspiring to distribute cocaine isn't buried. [snip] Pubdate: Sun, 31 Jan 1999 Source: Morning Call (PA) Copyright: 1999 The Morning Call Inc. Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.mcall.com/ Author: DEBBIE GARLICKI, The Morning Call URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n120.a09.html *** (9) THE PRISON CRAZE AND THE CRIME RATE WASHINGTON -- The violent crime rate in America continues to plummet. It's off 21 percent since 1993, 7 percent in 1997 alone. Murders in the country's 10 largest cities declined 12 percent in 1998. Our streets are certifiably the safest they've been in a quarter century. But there's grim news, too, summarized by writer Eric Schlosser in a disturbing report -- "The Prison-Industrial Complex" -- in The Atlantic Monthly. Some 1.8 million Americans are behind bars, in federal and state prisons and local jails. We are imprisoning more people than any other nation on earth, even Communist China. We've achieved the highest incarceration rate in human history for non-political offenses. [snip] So could we reduce crime without our obscene prison-building binge? Certainly. Prisons have become a revolving door for poor, highly dysfunctional, often illiterate drug abusers. Our governments are generally too chintzy to offer them drug treatment, behind bars or on the street. [snip] Another gnawing issue is race. Black men are five times as likely to be arrested for drug offenses as whites (even though whites and blacks have similar abuse levels). [snip] Pubdate: Sun, 10 Jan 1999 Source: Houston Chronicle (TX) Copyright: 1999 Houston Chronicle Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.chron.com/ Forum: http://www.chron.com/content/hcitalk/index.html Author: Neal R. Peirce, Washington Post Writers Group URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n139.a10.html *** Medical Marijuana *** COMMENT: (10-13) In California the status of medical marijuana remains at issue more than two years after Proposition 215 was passed. In Orange County, friends of Marvin Chavez are still angry at the six year prison sentence he received for operating a buyers' club. What especially rankles is that despite a police sting using phony "patients," he was denied use of 215 in his defense. Steve and Michele Kubby's high profile arrest for growing their own has taken some interesting turns. They knew they were under investigation, but had no idea of its size, scope, or intensity (which betray an undeniable animus). It all may turn into an argument over how many plants should be "enough." Finally, Dennis Peron, founder of the San Francisco Buyers' Club has become a gentleman farmer, raising medicine for friends in rural Lake County. He was interviewed twice in as many days and seems to be daring the local sheriff to bust him. *** (10) SUPPORTERS ARE GRIM AS CHAVEZ LED AWAY TO JAIL Marvin Chavez grimaced as his arms were pulled behind him. Handcuffs clicked closed around his wrists. And as bailiffs led him away to jail Friday, the last thing his army of ardent supporters saw were Chavez's hands, hanging beneath the awkward outline of his back brace. Sobbing, Andrea Nagy crumpled into the arms of a friend. "There is no justice! No good deed goes unpunished!" yelled David Zink. "Totally wrong," said Jack Shachter, grimly shaking his head. "Totally wrong." Chavez, founder of Orange County's medical marijuana co-op, was sentenced to six years in state prison for selling pot to undercover officers posing as medical patients, and for mailing pot to a cancer patient. Chavez's past had come back to haunt him, and numerous tearful appeals did not convince Judge Thomas Borris to grant Chavez probation, or to allow Chavez the shield he insists he has under Proposition 215, a ballot initiative that legalized marijuana for medical use. [snip] Confusion about how to implement Prop. 215 is still rampant in California. Many cannabis clubs have been shut down in Northern California, and many local authorities do not agree on interpretation. A local police officer who stole drugs recently received just a one-year sentence, said Julie Ireland, a former Los Angeles police officer. Chavez helped Ireland's husband and son, both terminal cancer patients. "This case should have never gone to trial," she said. Pubdate: Sat, 30 Jan 1999 Source: Orange County Register (CA) Section: News Page: 24 Copyright: 1999 The Orange County Register Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ Contact: email@example.com Author: Teri Sporza and John McDonald URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n118.a05.html *** (11) KUBBYS PREPARED FOR MARIJUANA ARRESTS OLYMPIC VALLEY -- For six months drug investigators and Steve and Michele Kubby engaged in a high-stakes game of cat and mouse. As investigators of the North Tahoe Task Force pored over details of the couple's lives for evidence of marijuana violations, the Kubbys -- tipped off about the investigation -- tidied up the loose ends of their growing operation. Launched by an anonymous letter claiming the former Libertarian gubernatorial candidate was financing his campaign by selling marijuana, the investigation climaxed Jan. 19 with the arrest of Steve and Michele Kubby on various marijuana charges. [snip] Pubdate: Wed, 3 Feb. 1999 Source: Auburn Journal (CA) Copyright: 1999 Auburn Journal Author: Patrick McCartney, Auburn Journal City Editor Contact: ElPatricio@aol.com Mail: 1030 High St., Auburn, CA 95603 URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n135.a08.html *** (12) NOT-SO-SECRET FARM KEEPS GROWING MIDDLETON - If the Lake County Cannabis Cultivation Project is difficult to find, it's not because anybody is trying to keep it a secret. A giant red canvas banner proclaiming "Medical Marijuana" beckons motorists, and a World Wide Web site and steady stream of faxed news releases keep everyone - including law enforcement agencies - updated on the 20-acre farm's doings. After all, those growing and providing marijuana to visitors and Bay Area residents believe their operation is completely legal. [snip] Pubdate: 6 Feb.. 1999 Source: San Mateo County Times (CA) Copyright: Feb. 6 by MediaNews Group, Inc. and ANG Newspapers Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.newschoice.com/newspapers/alameda/smct/ URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n139.a03.html *** (13) HARD DATA TRICKLES IN AS SCIENTISTS STUDY MARIJUANA Paul Mocko really doesn't like to smoke. But for 25 days, beginning in October, Mocko voluntarily puffed and coughed his way through three marijuana cigarettes every 24 hours as researchers watched for interactions between the cannabis and all the medications the 54-year-old takes to fight AIDS. [snip] But three studies in particular - the University of California study Mocko joined, a completed National Institutes of Health workshop, and a review by the Institute of Medicine expected to be released next month - are anxiously awaited by both sides of the smoldering debate over marijuana's medicinal value. It's a debate long marked by complaints there isn't enough data to prove either side's assertions. [snip] Pubdate: Sat, 6 Feb. 1999 Source: San Mateo County Times (CA) Copyright: 1999 by MediaNews Group, Inc. and ANG Newspapers Page: 7 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.newschoice.com/newspapers/alameda/smct/ Author: Matthew B. Stannard, Staff Writer URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n137.a02.html *** International News *** COMMENT: (15-18) It's certification time again, and the intent seems to be to pass Mexico, come what may. The emphasis on technology suggests a strong McCaffrey influence; despite recent lip service to treatment, the czar is enamored of high-tech gadgetry and the concept of sealing borders. Scotland, beset by increasing heroin overdoses and a burgeoning prison system, seems intent on following the American, rather than the Dutch model. The punitive approach also appeals to Chirac, whose remarks suggest that disagreement over enforcement will probably intensify as the European Union is strengthened.. Australia is also focused on heroin overdoses, with bitter wrangling between the harm reduction and law enforcement camps over the best solution. American policy in Colombia remains true to form; don't we always arm right wing killers as a matter of policy? *** (14) MEXICO TURNS TO HIGH-TECH TOOLS IN WAR ON DRUGS Program could cost up to $500 million over next 3 years The Mexican government revealed a high-tech strategy yesterday to wage ``a total war against drug trafficking,'' including new satellite surveillance, X-ray detection systems and high-speed navy patrol boats. [snip] Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Copyright: 1999 San Francisco Chronicle Pubdate: 5 Feb 1999 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Forum: http://www.sfgate.com/conferences/ Author: James F. Smith, Los Angeles Times URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n134.a10.html *** (15) MCLEISH SET TO CREATE A TASK FORCE OF DRUG BUSTERS A ministerial task force will be created to oversee a new multi-million pound campaign against drugs, it was announced yesterday. Henry McLeish, the Scottish home affairs minister, has pledged that he and his fellow ministers will work in a more targeted way to punish drug dealers and bolster communities. [snip] Pubdate: 4 February 1999 Source: Scotsman (UK) Copyright: The Scotsman Publications Ltd Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com Website: http://www.scotsman.com/ Forum: http://www.scotsman.com/ Author: Jenny Booth, Home Affairs Correspondent URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n131.a05.html *** (16) CHIRAC CALLS FOR EU TO HARMONISE ANTI-DRUG LAWS LISBON, Feb. 4 (Reuters) - French President Jacques Chirac, warning that illegal drug use in Europe was reaching dramatic levels, urged European Union members on Thursday to agree common laws to help fight the problem. "It is not acceptable that European laws in this area are not harmonised," he said during a visit to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction in Lisbon. [snip] Pubdate: Thu, 04 Feb. 1999 Source: Reuters Copyright: 1999 Reuters Limited. URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n135.a10.html *** (17) HEROIN OVERDOSE DEATHS HIT A RECORD 600 The number of people dying from heroin overdoses has risen to its highest level in Australia, leaping 10 per cent in just a year to 600 deaths. [snip] The deaths also reflected a world awash with drugs, as comparatively new opiate production in the former Soviet Union, Colombia and Mexico joined the more traditional sources of supply in Asia. Pubdate: Tue, 9 Feb. 1999 Source: Sydney Morning Herald (Australia) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.smh.com.au/ Author: Debra Jopson http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n143.a12.html *** (18) ANTI-DRUG AID ENDANGERED Colombian Killings Raise Doubts About Help For Military SAN PABLO, Colombia - A spate of massacres by right-wing paramilitary groups in Colombia has posed a new challenge to the Clinton administration's policy of combating the country's rampant drug trade by increasing aid to the Colombian police and military, officials say. [snip] Pubdate: Sun, Jan 31, 1999 Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA) Copyright: 1999 Mercury Center Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/ Author: DOUGLAS FARAH URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99.n120.a03.html *** HOT OFF THE 'NET *** Legalize-USA gets a "face lift" - now US Perspectives, The second issue of Perspectives, is now available in print and on-line at http://www.usperspectives.org/perspectives/ Rolf Ernst has made some very significant changes to what was once the Legalize-USA site. It is now called US Perspectives has had a wonderful "face lift" and in our opinion is much more suitable to a mainstream viewer. All the great multimedia archives are still in place and this is likely the best site in existence for RealVideo/Audio clips of important drug war footage. *** Just for Laughs There are a few poignant and humorous drug policy cartoons by John Pritchett at: http://www.pritchettcartoons.com/mj.htm *** VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH *** MIKE GOGULSKI Our DrugSense Volunteer of the Month for February, 1999 is Mike Gogulski. Besides newshawking (often under a pen name) a significant share of our news items, Mike is one of the editors on the Media Awareness Project's news posting team, and has created both documentation and flowcharts for the effort. We asked Mike a few questions: DS: How did you get into being a MAP volunteer? Mike: I've been an observer and sometimes debater of drug policy for about ten years. When I discovered the MAP service (through a reference on DRCNet), I immediately saw that here was a way for me to become involved directly. This was April, 1998. I began newshawking in earnest, and over the course of a week I had ramped up to mailing in about 15 articles per day to email@example.com. Now, at that time it was only Richard, Joel, and Olafur on the MAP editing team, and Richard screamed at me in an email "we love this but... TOO MUCH!". My recruitment as a MapNews Editor came shortly after. In getting trained to be an editor, I quickly recognized that MAP had a real need to get more editors on board and trained to handle the increasing volume of news. I stumbled a little myself in learning the editing ropes, and decided to produce some documentation. Today, new MAP editors have the benefit of a "production process diagram" flowchart, and a informational webpage telling them how to handle the news flow and produce well-formatted articles for MapNews. I'm now working to get the word out about MAP in every way that I can, through other DPR groups I work with and through a flyering campaign targeted at raves and nightclubs, where we should have a very interested audience. DS: What do you consider the most significant story of the past months? Mike: Without question the medical marijuana initiatives, the campaigns and the fallouts. MedMJ is an absolutely pivotal issue for us right now, because it betrays the lie that marijuana is a dangerous and worthless drug. Marijuana prohibition is the keystone of the Drug War: weaken it, and the entire mess comes crashing down. DS: What is your favorite website, besides the MAP/DrugSense sites? Mike: Really tough for me to say. Probably 90% of my web traffic is to http://www.mapinc.org/. http://www.legalize.org/ and http://www.druglibrary.org/ are also excellent. DS: Anything else you would like to tell the readers of the weekly? Mike: Yes! Write more letters! Even if you don't have the time to sit and craft a dazzlingly eloquent piece of prosaic elocution, bang out a quick note of protest to the editors. If you have ANY opinion at all on ANY piece we run, just click on the "Contact" link and speak your mind about it. Even if your letter doesn't get printed, adding to the volume of letters that the press receives about drug policy reform will help to push the issue farther and farther into the forefront of editorial consciousness. SPEAK OUT LOUDLY!!! Note also that none of what we do would be possible without the dedication and patience of 10 other editors, and over a hundred NewsHawks who bring the information in and work it into our service. Considering that many of us have never even met one another, we are a fantastically effective and cohesive team. DS: Thanks so much, Mike, for all that you do! Mike: You are so welcome. Thank you for the chance to participate directly in what I believe is the absolute cutting edge of reform. Working with MAP to lay the foundation for these changes is nothing short of elevating. We will win! *** QUOTE OF THE WEEK *** "One has to multiply thoughts to the point where there aren't enough policemen to control them" - Stanislaw Lec *** DS Weekly is one of the many free educational services DrugSense offers our members. Watch this feature to learn more about what DrugSense can do for you. TO SUBSCRIBE, UNSUBSCRIBE, OR UPDATE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS: Please utilize the following URLs http://www.drugsense.org/hurry.htm http://www.drugsense.org/unsub.htm News/COMMENTS-Editor: Tom O'Connell (firstname.lastname@example.org) Senior-Editor: Mark Greer (email@example.com) We wish to thank all our contributors, editors, Newshawks and letter writing activists. NOTICE: In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. REMINDER: Please help us help reform. Send any news articles you find on any drug related issue to firstname.lastname@example.org *** NOW YOU CAN DONATE TO DRUGSENSE ONLINE AND IT'S TAX DEDUCTIBLE DrugSense provides many services to at no charge BUT THEY ARE NOT FREE TO PRODUCE. We incur many costs in creating our many and varied services. If you are able to help by contributing to the DrugSense effort visit our convenient donation web site at http://www.drugsense.org/donate.htm -OR- Mail in your contribution. Make checks payable to MAP Inc. send your contribution to: The Media Awareness Project (MAP) Inc. d/b/a DrugSense PO Box 651 Porterville, CA 93258 (800) 266 5759 MGreer@mapinc.org http://www.mapinc.org/ http://www.drugsense.org/ -------------------------------------------------------------------
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