GLOBAL: CDC Warned over 30 years ago… Who is running policy??

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August 13, 1982 / 31(31);428-9


The Surgeon General’s Warning on Marijuana

The Surgeon General of the Public Health Service has issued the following warning on marijuana:

Marijuana use is a major public health problem in the United States. In the past 20 years, its’ use has increased 30-fold; it is estimated that more than a quarter of the American population has used it. The age at which persons first use marijuana has decreased gradually to the junior high school years. Until recently, nearly 11% of high school seniors used it, and although that figure has declined to 7%, its daily use still exceeds that of alcohol; more high school seniors use marijuana than smoke cigarettes. In a recent study, 32% of those surveyed had used marijuana during the previous 30 days, while 25% had smoked tobacco.

On March 24, 1982, the Department of Health and Human Services submitted to Congress a report reviewing the consequences of marijuana use. Marijuana and Health, 1982, ninth in a series, is primarily based on two recently conducted, comprehensive, scientific reviews by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, the Canadian Addiction Research Foundation, and the World Health Organization (WHO). Both independent reviews corroborate the Public Health Service’s findings of health hazards associated with marijuana use: Acute intoxication with marijuana interferes with many aspects of mental functioning and has serious, acute effects on perception and skilled performance, such as driving and other complex tasks involving judgement or fine motor skills.

Among the known or suspected chronic effects of marijuana are:

  1. short-term memory impairment and slowness of learning.
  2. impaired lung function similar to that found in cigarette smokers. Indications are that more serious effects, such as cancer and other lung disease, follow extended use.
  3. decreased sperm count and sperm motility.
  4. interference with ovulation and pre-natal development.
  5. impaired immune response.
  6. possible adverse effects on heart function.
  7. by-products of marijuana remaining in body fat for several weeks, with unknown consequences. The storage of these by-products increases the possiblilties for chronic, as well as residual, effects on performance, even after the acute reaction to the drug has worn off. Of special concern are the long-term developmental effects in

children and adolescents, who are particularly vulnerable to the drug’s behavioral and psychological effects. The “amotivational syndrome,” characterized by a pattern of energy loss, diminished school performance, harmed parental relationships, and other behavorial disruptions, has been associated with prolonged marijuana use by young persons. Although more research is required, recent national surveys report that 40% of heavy users experience some or all of those symptoms.

The Public Health Service concludes that marijuana has a broad range of psychological and biological effects, many of which are dangerous and harmful to health, and it supports the major conclusion of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine.

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Global: Kids and Cannabis Smoke! New research found evidence of secondhand marijuana smoke exposure in nearly half of children whose parents smoke the drug.

“While the effects of tobacco smoke have been studied extensively, we are still learning about marijuana exposure,” said researcher Dr. Karen Wilson, from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City.

“What we found in this study is that secondhand marijuana smoke does get into the lungs and little bodies of young children,” Wilson said in a school news release.

The study included parents in Colorado who used marijuana and was conducted after recreational use of the drug became legal in that state. Currently, 10 states permit recreational marijuana use and 33 allow medical use of the drug.

Among the parents in the study, smoking was the most common form of marijuana use (30 percent), followed by edibles (14.5 percent) and vaporizers (9.6 percent), the investigators found. New research being presented at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) Annual Scientific Meeting shows it’s possible for both children and adults with uncontrolled asthma to find their symptoms worsening due to cannabis allergy and exposure to marijuana smoke. A study presented at the Pediatric Academic Societies 2016 Meeting found that one in six infants and toddlers admitted to a Colorado hospital with coughing, wheezing and other symptoms of bronchiolitis tested positive for marijuana exposure.

We report a case of mild cannabinoid poisoning in a preschool child, after 3-week ingestion of hemp seed oil prescribed by his pediatrician to strengthen his immune system. The patient presented neurological symptoms that disappeared after intravenous hydration. A possible mild withdrawal syndrome was reported after discharge. The main metabolite of Δ-tetrahydrocannabinol was detected in urine, and very low concentration of Δ-tetrahydrocannabinol was detected in the ingested product. This is, as far as we know, the first report of cannabinoid poisoning after medical prescription of hemp seed oil in a preschool child.

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GLOBAL: Cannabis the NEW Thalidomide???

Could medical cannabis be the new THALIDOMIDE? Fears of a crisis as doctors consider doling marijuana-based medicines out to pregnant mothers despite evidence the drug can damage foetuses

  • Pressure to loosen NHS guidelines on medical cannabis use is growing in the UK
  • The British Medical Journal warned that widespread use could lead to disaster
  • The potential crisis was compared to the thalidomide scandal of the 50s and 60s


Each of the 400 phone calls to the cannabis dispensaries followed a script. ‘Hi,’ said a female voice. ‘I’m eight weeks pregnant and feeling really nauseated. Are there any products recommended for morning sickness?’

In two-thirds of cases, the reply was: ‘Yes’.

Around half of those callers who’d received an affirmative answer were then advised to buy a specific ‘cure’ in a form they could eat.

Just under 40 per cent were told to get it in a form that could be inhaled or smoked. Most of the remainder were offered tinctures or drinks.

The recommended cure in question? Marijuana. But far from being genuine requests for help from expectant mothers, the phone calls were part of a research project by the University of Colorado.

The researchers were pretending to be pregnant to see how cannabis — legal for medical reasons in the U.S. state of Colorado since 2000 and fully legal since 2014 — was being dispensed. The answers they received offer a worrying insight into the booming medical marijuana industry.

‘After eight weeks [of pregnancy], everything should be good with consuming alcohol and weed,’ one dispensary assistant replied.

‘When I was pregnant and started to feel nauseous, I did not smoke [cannabis] more than two times a day,’ recommended the proprietor of another clinic.

‘Edible [marijuana] would not hurt the child,’ reassured another, telling the woman, wrongly, that something ‘going through your digestional tract’ will have no effect on an unborn child.

Of the 277 dispensaries that recommended cannabis as a cure for morning sickness, three-quarters then attempted to sell a version of the drug containing THC, the chemical that gives users a ‘high’.

Many also advised their pregnant patients to keep their consumption of this intoxicating drug secret from their doctor.

‘The doctor will probably just tell you that marijuana is bad for kids and try pushing pills on you,’ said one. ‘I do not know if the baby doctors are chill or not, [so] do not go stoned when you talk to them,’ warned another.

Perhaps those doctors had good reason for their reservations about cannabis. For the Colorado research paper, published in the journal Obstetrics and Gynaecology earlier this year, highlights cannabis as a matter of growing concern to medical practitioners across the world.

Increasingly, marijuana is being sold for medical reasons. Yet this ‘medical’ marijuana is very far from being the safe, natural healthcare product its often-rapacious suppliers would have us believe.

In some circumstances, the product — which is becoming legal in growing numbers of countries, including Canada, the U.S. and most recently Britain in highly specific circumstances — can be dangerous and possibly fatal. Particularly when taken by pregnant women.

To blame is a simple fact: a multitude of studies over several years have shown all forms of cannabis to be ‘teratogenic’. Meaning that, like tobacco or excessive alcohol, they can harm a foetus.

The drug has been linked to a host of serious birth defects, including at least six life-threatening deformities.

They include two congenital heart problems; a neurological condition called anencephaly, in which a child is born with a large portion of the brain missing, often dying within hours; and the birth defect gastroschisis, where the intestines develop outside the body.

‘Babies exposed to marijuana in utero are at increased risk of admission to neonatal intensive care units,’ says Torri Metz, a University of Utah professor who was among the Colorado study’s authors.

‘There are also concerns about possible long-term effects on the developing brain, impacting cognitive function and decreasing academic ability later in childhood.’

Which brings us to the situation in Britain, where there is pressure on the Government from an increasingly powerful cannabis lobby to loosen the NHS guidelines on medical cannabis use.

For complete story


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ADDICTION: Nearly always starts with a child and a bad choice!


NOVEMBER 12, 2018 By Dr. Robert DuPont in StatNews

In the American mind, drug addiction happens only to people “born under a bad sign.” That’s just not true. Worse, it implies that success in life protects individuals from addiction. Throughout my 50-year career working on drug abuse prevention and treatment, I’ve often seen drug addiction befall every kind of person.

That’s one reason I have been urging people to see “Beautiful Boy,” a new film about the relationship between a good father and his good son as the teenager dives into addiction. The film is based on a pair of best-selling books: “Beautiful Boy,” which tells the story from the father’s perspective, and “Tweak,” which tells it from the son’s.

Ninety percent of adult substance use disorders begin in adolescence because of the unique vulnerability of the adolescent brain to addiction. This movie is a cautionary story for teens and families. Another reason I am recommending the movie (and the books) is their riveting and relentless portrayal of how addiction hijacks the brain.

Love of parents not a match for addiction

The film shows the limits of treatment and family love in confronting the awesome and tenacious power of addiction. The movie does not let the viewer stray from that horrifying descent into this modern hell. It brutally and relentlessly portrays the chemical slavery that is addiction and the sustained helplessness of both father and son as they struggle to escape addiction’s iron grip year after devastating year.

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North America: Cannabis Conundrum Causing Care Chaos

The Marijuana Conundrum in North America – A recognized deficiency: Inadequate protective protocols

An evaluation of risk applied to marijuana products for recreational or medical purposes concludes that advanced mitigation strategies and new protective delivery protocols are necessary to adequately protect the public from harm. In Canada a controlled distribution program is in place called the RevAid®.1,2 This program assures consumers are monitored to prevent or minimize major side effects and or reactions. Under this program only prescribers and pharmacists who are registered or patients who are enrolled and who have agreed to meet all the conditions of the program are given access to these drugs.

The Marijuana Conundrum in North America Oct2018


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USA: Malcolm Gladwell – Big Concerns about Potent Pot

Malcolm Gladwell blasts pot legalization, says “we should not be racing to make this available,” and that the emerging legal industry is “a whole new scary thing.”

Also today, CBS This Morning features SAM Pres. Kevin Sabet
This week, best-selling The Tipping Point author Malcolm Gladwell, who the New York Times has called “as close to a singular talent as exists today” in the world of nonfiction, opined about his distaste for the legalization of marijuana and the expanded normalization of the drug. In an extended interview with an NPR affiliate, Gladwell stated:
“To my mind, the important issue is not the economic one, it is the psychological and medical one,” he said. “Research seems pretty clear that the kind of marijuana that’s being sold now, which has levels of THC that are seven or eight times higher than historically, has some quite serious side effects, not all of which we understand.”
He went on to say: “The idea of having the general public consume what is an extraordinarily powerful drug that we don’t fully understand is quite terrifying to my mind.”
CBS This Morning Features SAM

Also t oday, CBS This Morning featured a story on the sales of recreational marijuana in Massachusetts, and SAM President Kevin Sabet. In the story, Sabet said: 

“The state is being heavily influenced by the marijuana industry to tell you your product is safe. There have been…recalls because of additives, pesticides, and molds, so it’s really ‘buyer beware.’

“This isn’t about the individual users, this is about a green light to an industry that is taking all of their plays from Big Tobacco, who lied to the American people for a century. Why would we get fooled again?”
Colorado Cost Study 

In case you missed it: a new  study conducted by a third-party analysis firm found each dollar in tax revenue costs the state of Colorado $4.50.
About SAM
Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) is a nonpartisan, non-profit alliance of physicians, policy makers, prevention workers, treatment and recovery professionals, scientists, and other concerned citizens opposed to marijuana legalization who want health and scientific evidence to guide marijuana policies. SAM has affiliates in more than 30 states.   Evidence shows that marijuana – which has skyrocketed in average potency over the past decades - is addictive and harmful to the human brain , especially when used by adolescents. In states that have already legalized the drug, there has been an increase in drugged driving crashes ,   youth marijuana use , and  c osts that far outweigh pot revenues. These states have seen a black market that continues to thrive,sustained marijuana arrest rates, and tobacco company investment in marijuana .
For more information about marijuana use and its effects, visit


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USA: Massachusetts Steps into Marijuana Madness!

November 20, 2018
CONTACT: Pat Brogan
Massachusetts Opens its First Recreational Pot Shops Despite Overwhelming Evidence Showing its Negative Effects on Society 

Commercialization of marijuana starts today in Massachusetts
(Alexandria, VA) -  Today, recreational sales of marijuana are slated to begin in Massachusetts two years after the state narrowly voted to legalize. In response, Dr. Kevin Sabet, president and founder of Smart Approaches to Marijuana released the following statement: 

“Today is the beginning of a dark time for the Bay State. We are proud to have seen the majority of municipalities in the state move to ban pot shops or move to slowly consider the ramifications of allowing Big Pot to set up shop in their neighborhoods. We would encourage communities to continue to consider the consequences legalization could have on their state, especially with the recent release of astudy that found each dollar in tax revenue costs the state of Colorado $4.50.
“Moving forward, SAM will work with local partners to expose this predatory industry as it brings the harms we have seen in other legalized states to Massachusetts. Increased drugged driving, higher rates of youth exposure, skyrocketing poison control calls and emergency room visits, and a thriving black market are part and parcel in the states that have unfortunately chose to go to pot. We expect Massachusetts will continue this trend.”


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Colorado: Legalizing Pot Punishes Profits!


For Immediate Release: November 19, 2018

Contact: Pat Brogan


New Report: Cost of Marijuana Legalization Far Outweighs Tax Revenues

(Denver, CO) - Today, a new study on the impact of marijuana legalization in Colorado conducted by the Centennial Institute found that for every one dollar in tax revenue from marijuana, the state spends $4.50 as a result of the effects of the consequences of legalization.

This study used all available data from the state on hospitalizations, treatment for Cannabis Use Disorder (CUD), impaired driving, black market activity, and other parameters to determine the cost of legalization. Of course, calculating the human cost of addiction is nearly impossible, we can assume the cost estimated for treating CUD is a gross underestimate due to the fact that it is widely believed among health officials that CUD goes largely untreated…yet rates have been increasing significantly in the past decade.

That, in conjunction with the fact that there is no way of quantifying the environmental impact the proliferation of single use plastic packaging common within the marijuana industry, leads us to believe this is indeed a very conservative estimate.

“Studies such as this show that the only people making money off the commercialization of marijuana are those in the industry who profit at the expense of public health and safety,” said Dr. Kevin Sabet, president of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM). “The wealthy men in suits behind Big Marijuana will laugh all the way to the bank while minority communities continue to suffer, black markets continue to thrive, and taxpayers are left to foot the bill.”

“The data collected in this study, as in similar studies before it, continues to show the scope of the cost of commercialization. The effects of legalization are far and wide, and affect just about every resident in the state directly and indirectly,” said Jeff Hunt, Vice President of Public Policy for Colorado Christian University.

“The pot industry doesn’t want this dirty truth to be seen by law makers and the taxpayers, who were promised a windfall in tax revenue,” said Justin Luke Riley, president of the Marijuana Accountability Coalition. “The MAC will continue to shine a light on the industry and urge our lawmakers to reign in Big Pot before it brings more harm on Coloradans.”



MAC, a project of SAM Action, 400 N. Columbus Street, Suite 202, Alexandria, VA 22314



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Canada: Black Market will ALWAYS continue… Still NO surprise there!!

Cannabis users and growers still turning to black market

November 16, 2018  By DATAC

As the legalization of cannabis settles in, coming up on the one month mark, there are many challenges which have arisen in the legal sales arena. There have been issues across the country with the legal dispensaries, either online (ON) or store fronts (NB, QC) running out of product and experiencing website glitches. These bumps in the road for legal sales have meant that many recreational and medicinal users are turning to the black market to obtain their products.

Black market filling the holes

The black market for cannabis sales obviously existed prior to the legalization of cannabis last month, and just this fact alone means that they have a head start in sales. Many users, medicinal and recreational, are going to be hard to bring around to purchasing from legal sources. There are two main reasons for this, the first being that the legal sites (storefronts or online stores) have been running out since they opened their doors. Some have completely run out of all products, and have had to close their doors, while others are simply at very low stock and/or long wait times to obtain the product as things are on backorder.

As well as running out of products there are numerous products which will not be available legally until next year, such as edibles, which includes such things as cannabis-infused foods (from cakes to candies) as well as drinks. Cannabis concentrates are another product which will not be available via legal dispensaries until next year. The black market will have a stronghold on all of these, still not purchasable cannabis products, for at least a year, which also means buyers keeping their relationships with their illegal dispensers.

The second reason for a user choosing the black market is price. Particularly for those users who were already set up with a place to purchase, prior to legalization, deciding now to pay much more for the same thing they can already get, is a hard sell. There is variation from province to province with the cost of product from stores versus street, but the prices in stores can be up to $15 a gram with the average price on the street ranging from about $5 (Alberta) to around $7 (Ontario). It also seems that because the prices are high on the legal market it may have led to a drop in prices in the black market.

For complete article


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Michigan: Conned Into Cannabis with Corrupt Censorship?


TV stations pulled anti-legalization ads ahead of
midterm marijuana votes, advocates say

This headline, and the story it describes in Michigan, raises two questions:

  1. Is it ethical for TV stations to pull political ads off the air?
  2. Is it ethical for the ads’ opponents to set up their own “fact-checking” committee as the basis for complaining that the ads are inaccurate?

Will Common Cause intervene?

Marijuana Moment said the ad was pulled for “incorrectly claiming that the initiative would allow for ‘unlimited potency’ cannabis products.”  If that is not true, than the industry will allow regulators to cap the potency at 16% THC, something that hasn’t been allowed in other states.    When Coloradans supported a cap, the marijuana companies bought off the authorized to petition in 2016.   Good luck Michigan.

The Coalition to Regulate Marijuana like Alcohol created a ballot initiative in Michigan to legalize marijuana for “recreational” use. Marijuana Policy Project, New Approach PAC, and the Drug Policy Alliance, all national organizations, make up the coalition.  The out-of-state groups sponsored every single initiative to legalize marijuana for either medical or “recreational” use.  Backed by billionaires, they raise lots of money to legalize pot, and leave each state’s taxpayers to clean up their mess.

They have succeeded in convincing Americans that marijuana is a “medicine” that cures or relieves some 65 different conditions. They tell teens it is “not addictive,” is “safer than alcohol,” along other of  “facts” that are  lies.

So, it is no small irony that the Coalition has set itself up as a reliable “fact” checker to attack Michigan citizens.  The opposition was only trying to prevent the legalization of an addictive, harmful drug in their state.

A sad time for Michigan

Did the subterfuge work?  Yep. Michigan passed legalization by a vote of 2,346,713 to 1,851,679 (55.9% vs 44.1%).

Michigan already has a stoned driver problem, more than most states. Since law enforcement does not have good detection methods, this problem will only get worse with legalization.

Read Marijuana Moment article here.
For an in-depth report on how the legalization movement has unfolded, read “Tracking the Money That’s Legalizing Marijuana and Why It Matters” here:


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