Is Recreational MJ a Blasphemy?

Cannabis is a Recreational Drug
and that's a good thing

cops___.jpgOpposition to the recreational use of marijuana is not confined to the sky-is-falling hyperbole of drug warriors and law enforcement whose lucrative and lush lifestyles are dependent on the never-end flowing of government drug prohibition money, but to respected members of the medical marijuana community who have spent a better part of their lives fighting to make marijuana accessible medically.


dennis_peron.jpgRecently Dennis Peron, the person most singularly responsible for getting us to the brink of legalization, published an opinion piece that was edited by long-time medical marijuana advocate Steven Kubby entitled "Why Cannabis is Not a Recreational Drug." To read the article CLICK HERE.

Why anyone, let alone medical marijuana advocates, treats the term “recreational” as some kind of pejorative is beyond comprehension. Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary defines "recreational" as “providing refreshment in body or mind, as after work, by some form of play, amusement, or relaxation.” I cannot think of a word that better describes both the effect and attributes of the use of marijuana than "recreational."

Although I certainly understand their reasoning and in many instances concur with it, to oppose the recreational use of marijuana is short-sighted for health reasons and dooms marijuana consumers to continued exorbitant prices for a relatively easy-to-cultivate plant.


we_not_criminals.jpgI have always believed that one of the most important reasons for legalizing marijuana was because it will then be available for adults to use recreationally legally instead of making them into criminals.


alcohol_vs_weed_in_bag.jpgAs a nurse I have experienced firsthand the benefits of the recreational use of marijuana. I lost count shortly after I started working in hospitals how many patients I provided care for because of their use of alcohol. The number of patients I have taken care of in a hospital because of marijuana use I don’t need even need the fingers on one hand to count.


altering_senses.jpgNurses are realistic about human behavior and humans like to alter their senses. They have been doing it for so long that I believe there is genetic basis for our strong desire to alter our senses.


alcohho_vs_mj_cartoon.pngMany people find that marijuana is an effective substitute for alcohol when they feel like altering their senses. Multiple studies show that alcohol consumption goes down when marijuana use goes up. That is a good thing because marijuana is far less dangerous than alcohol.


anderson.jpeg daniel_rees.jpgIn a study undertaken by Professors Mark Anderson and Daniel I. Rees and published in the Journal of Law and Economics, the authors wrote:


Legalization of medical marijuana is associated with increased use of marijuana among adults, but not among minors. In addition, legalization is associated with a nearly 9 percent decrease in traffic fatalities, most likely to due to its impact on alcohol consumption. Our estimates provide strong evidence that marijuana and alcohol are substitutes. To read the full study CLICK HERE.


Another study undertaken by Rees and Anderson found a direct correlation between increased marijuana use and a decrease in suicides particularly among 20 - 29 yo males.


suicide.jpgUsing state-level data for the period 1990 through 2007, we estimate the effect of legalizing medical marijuana on suicide rates. Our results suggest that the passage of a medical marijuana law is associated with an almost 5 percent reduction in the total suicide rate, an 11 percent reduction in the suicide rate of 20- through 29-year-old males, and a 9 percent reduction in the suicide rate of 30- through 39-year-old males.


In commenting on their study in a research brief published in January 2015, the authors wrote:


mj_antidepessant.jpgWe conclude that the legalization of medical marijuana leads to fewer suicides among young adult males. This result is consistent with the oft-voiced, but controversial, claim that marijuana can be used to cope with depression and anxiety caused by stressful life events. However, the result may, at least in part, be attributable to the reduction in alcohol consumption among young adults that appears to accompany the legalization of medical marijuana.

To read the Research Brief CLICK HERE.


20s_alcohol_vs_pot.jpgYes the studies are done in medical marijuana states, but do you really think that all those 20-29 yo males are using marijuana to treat their arthritis? It is no secret that the vast majority of young adults who have gotten medical marijuana recommendations are using it for recreational rather than the recommended medical purposes.


The value of the non-medical recreational use does not end with males in their 20s and 30s. A study authored by Professor Philip Smith and three others found that domestic violence was significantly less likely in households in which marijuana was used recreationally.


alcohol-vs-cannabis-couple.jpgWe found that more frequent marijuana use by husbands and wives predicted less frequent IPV [intimate partner violence] perpetration by husbands. Husbands’ marijuana use also predicted less frequent IPV perpetration by wives.


Once again these were people using marijuana recreationally instead of alcohol. Should they be denied this most beneficial of uses just because marijuana also has medical uses? To read this study CLICK HERE.


dr_feelgood_pill_bottle.jpgThe real problem marijuana has is that it does all these medical things - reduces pain, facilitates sleep, mitigates depression – and unlike most medicines which make you feel nauseous or even awful, marijuana makes you feel good. If marijuana made you feel queasy to awful like most other medications, it would be legal, but because it makes you feel good, it’s illegal.


doctor_gateway.jpgFurther just because something is a medicine, doesn’t mean an M.D. has to be the gatekeeper. Aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen are medications that are far more dangerous than marijuana, yet they are legal and can be sold anywhere to anyone including children.


supplements.jpgThen there are the medicines we call supplements like niacin, riboflavin and vitamin A-H. Cannabis falls more into this category than it does in the aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen category. Our endocannabinoid system is the largest neurotransmission system in our bodies. To work it needs cannabinoids and our bodies produce endocannbinoids in order to make this system work.


ethan_russo.jpgLike people needing to take “supplemental” vitamin D because they cannot produce enough, some people need to take “supplemental” cannabinoids or ectocannabinoids because they cannot produce enough. Cannabis is the only natural plant that produces cannabinoids that our bodies can use.  In his research study on cannabinoid deficiency Dr. Ethan Russo wrote:


Migraine, fibromyalgia, IBS and related conditions display common clinical, biochemical and pathophysiological patterns that suggest an underlying clinical endocannabinoid deficiency that may be suitably treated with cannabinoid medicines.


To read this groundbreaking and vitally important study CLICK HERE.


supplements_natural.jpgOnce again does an MD need to be a gateway for a product that is, in the words of DEA Judge Francis Young, “one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man.”


mj_arrest_rate.gifThe bottom line is that people are going to use marijuana recreationally and making it illegal for the last 80 years has not stopped them from doing it. Should we really continue criminalizing them and continue arresting 700,000 Americans every year with somewhere between $10 - $20 billion of taxpayers’ money spent annually to enforce marijuana prohibition laws?


drug_murders.jpgShould we continue to tolerate the thousands of murders along our border with Mexico because of illegal drug smuggling with marijuana comprising about half of all smuggled drugs.


blacks_in_prison.jpgShould black and brown people continue to be arrested, prosecuted and imprisoned at a far higher rate than white people even though the use of marijuana in their communities is about the same as the white community?


college_student.jpg Eviction-notice.jpgShould students continue to get busted and lose their college scholarships and low-income people get kicked out of their low-income housing and other welfare programs because they use marijuana recreationally?


CNA.gifAs a nurse I am proud that the California Nurses Association supports Prop. 64 and the reason they support it has a lot to do with all of the above. To be against allowing the recreational use, to actually work to prevent its recreational use, makes no sense and harms people and our communities.


money_wrapped_around_marijuana.jpgAs for the point I made in the beginning of this piece that opposing the recreational use of marijuana “dooms marijuana consumers to continued exorbitant prices for a relatively easy-to-cultivate plant,” I have written a piece on that very subject and if you would like to read it CLICK HERE.


The list of people and organizations that have endorsed Prop. 64 is truly impressive – practically breath-taking in scope. From the California Democratic Party to the California Medical Association, the California NAACP to the League of Conservation Voters – these are people and organizations that engender respect and provide invaluable contributions to the well-being of our communities. To see the list CLICK HERE.


From substituting marijuana for alcohol to ending the violence and ruined lives caused by prohibition, I respectfully and sincerely request those opposed to the recreational use of marijuana to reconsider their opposition.



Surviving for the Long Term
with Cannabis

A special presentation by Long Term AIDS patient Tom Place


tom_place.jpgLong term AIDS survivor Tom Place brings his roadshow cannabis presentation to all three November MAPP meetings in Joshua Tree, Palm Springs and Riverside. Tom has been delivering a series of these very personal presentations on Long Term Survival with Cannabis at many different venues throughout California and now he brings it to the Inland Empire.


Fighting AIDS, drug addiction, kidney failure and more, Tom Place knew life was coming to an end. Then he discovered cannabis and it changed and saved his life. Tom’s story is as inspiring as it is informative. Detailing his first person experiences, Tom explains how a patient can obtain real results using cannabis for serious problems like chronic pain, cancer, diabetes, AIDS as well as neurological & autoimmune disorders.


Taking a straightforward but somewhat unorthodox look at using cannabis, Tom will discuss how to get healthy without getting high, what types of products give the best results, how to get the right dose and most importantly how to save money.


tom_tincture.jpgTom has developed a tincture marketed under the Grandpa Tom label that many patients have found to be extremely beneficial.


Mark your calendar now to attend one of these special November MAPP meetings.


Riverside/Western IE MAPP meeting – Wednesday, November 2 at 7:30 p.m. at the historic THCF Patient Center, 647 Main St. Unit 4D, Riverside 92501.


Palm Springs/Coachella Valley MAPP meeting - Saturday, November 5 at 12 noon at the new age palace Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, downtown Palm Springs 92262.


Saturday, November 5 at 3 p.m. - Morongo Basin/Joshua Tree MAPP meeting at the legendary Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree 92252

If you like this newsletter and
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Join our 420 Club and Donate $4.20/month


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Off-the-Wall MJ Expo & It's Free - just don't tell anyone

Friend --

see_no_evil_etc.pngIt's a Marijuana Expo

Except they don't want anyone to know

dhs_scenic.jpgThis is certainly not your average ganja expo with the same speakers you have heard a gazillion times before. In fact you wouldn’t know it’s even about marijuana from the flyers and promotional material being handed out by Desert Hot Springs, but this downtrodden, economically distressed city is now billing itself as a mecca for growth and opportunity and is inviting the world to attend its 2016 Desert Hot Springs Business Summit on Wednesday, Oct. 26,


And it’s free.png


dhs_bus_summit.jpgThe Business Summit is subtitled “Strengthening Our Economy with New Opportunities” where “Business Owners, Future Business Owners, Developers, Builders, Investors and Educators” can come and “learn about the many great business opportunities available to businesses in Desert Hot Springs.”


What is never mentioned anywhere in the promotional materials is that these “new opportunities” DHS is touting is the opportunity to cash in on the burgeoning marijuana industry with the 2 million square feet of cultivation facilities that are springing up in what used to be the empty, underutilized, scruffy, dilapidated and very dusty industrial warehouse district of DHS.


new_business.jpgThere is absolutely nothing else going on in DHS that is providing “new opportunities.” It’s all marijuana and nothing else but marijuana. Rather than continuing to buy into law enforcement’s worn-out shibboleth that marijuana distribution will cause businesses to flee, DHS city and business leaders see the boom in new development, new employment and the increased revenues to improve city services financed by the taxes on the marijuana industry as an incentive for new businesses to locate in DHS.


no_to_pot.jpgAs noted above, no one reading the promotional materials would ever know that these “new opportunities” were made by possible by an expansions of legal marijuana cultivation and distribution facilities on a scale that has not been seen in California since 1937. The word marijuana, or any of its synonyms, is not mentioned once in the four page informational packet. To see for yourself CLICK HERE.


Of interest to political junkies and celebrity seekers is that the promotional materials inform that “The following dignitaries or their representatives will be in attendance: U.S. Congressman Raul Ruiz, California State Senator Jeff Stone, California Assemblyman Eduardo Garcia, Riverside County Supervisor John Benoit, DHS Mayor Scott Matas.”


Although the promotional materials are too timid to intone “the plant that dare not speak its name,” I cannot imagine that these “dignitaries” are not aware that the DHS 2016 Business Summit is a celebration about marijuana as savior and how wonderful it will be for the people of DHS. If they do know, does that mean the old fear of marijuana is fading away with the swelling support of legalization? Maybe yes and maybe no.


stone.jpgruiz.gifStone is challenging Ruiz for the 36th Congressional District – it’s a tight race. They are stumping for votes for sure – will it overcome their “reefer fearfulness” and they will show up as billed? As for the other dignitaries, they are not in tight races so maybe they will be there and maybe they won’t. I’m sure DHS Mayor Matas will be there so you are assured of at least one actual dignitary and not just a “representative.”


It is truly an irony that could be a George Carlin routine, but the folks at DHS have come up with a new euphemism.  Rather than say marijuana or cannabis or ganja industry, DHS refers to it as a "Cultivation Industry" with one of the two seminars actually entitled ‘Cultivation Industry: Advantages to Desert Hot Springs.”


Of course the only advantage is that DHS will license marijuana growers and most other cities won’t. So although the seminar alludes to the “cultivation industry” the only cultivation coming to DHS is marijuana cultivation.


“Cultivation industry” is such a cop-out. There was no cultivation industry in DHS before marijuana and there will not be any others. Marijuana has so driven up land prices, that even if some other “cultivation industry” wanted to locate in DHS, they couldn’t as land has become so astronomically expensive that no one else can possibly afford to cultivate there. That is except for maybe heroin poppies and coca plants but DHS isn’t licensing them – yet.


marijuana___sign.jpgWhat is so hypocritical is that DHS has no desire to entice other cultivators to cultivate other plants. They are taxing marijuana at $10 per square foot so if the two million square feet of cultivation space is used for growing carrots, DHS will hardly get a dime let alone the $20 million plus they expect to make from the marijuana licenses.


bubble.jpgThere was the Tech-Bubble, the Land Bubble and the Stock Bubble and now there appears to be the Marijuana Bubble. DHS is getting in relatively early so they may actually make good before it bursts when other cities and counties start allowing massive cultivation and distribution. Until then DHS is going to ride the wave until it crashes.


If you have the time to spare to make the drive out to DHS, I think you will find it interesting and even amusing. It’s not going to be a ganja fest, but it is going to be unlike any marijuana expo you have ever been too.


The Business Summit is this Wed. Oct. 26 and begins at 8 a.m. with a meet and greet continental breakfast. This is followed by two seminars from 9 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. The seminars are entitled:

Desert Hot Springs: “A New Leader in Small Business Development” and

Cultivation Industry “Advantages to Desert Hot Springs.”


From 11:00 am to 1 p.m. the Exhibitor Expo opens with booths and information from cultivators, distributors, other businesses and government agencies. MAPP will have a booth there distributing medical marijuana and other information.


The DHS Business Summit takes place at the Boys and Girls Club (so much for sending the wrong message to children), 11750 Cholla Dr., Desert Hot Springs 92240. There is no charge for admission.



Surviving for the Long Term
with Cannabis

A special presentation by Long Term

AIDS patient Tom Place


tom_place.jpgLong term AIDS survivor Tom Place brings his roadshow cannabis presentation to all three November MAPP meetings in Joshua Tree, Palm Springs and Riverside. Tom has been delivering a series of these very personal presentations on Long Term Survival with Cannabis at many different venues throughout California and now he brings it to the Inland Empire.


Fighting AIDS, drug addiction, kidney failure and more, Tom Place knew life was coming to an end. Then he discovered cannabis and it changed and saved his life. Tom’s story is as inspiring as it is informative. Detailing his first person experiences, Tom explains how a patient can obtain real results using cannabis for serious problems like chronic pain, cancer, diabetes, AIDS as well as neurological & autoimmune disorders.


Taking a straightforward but somewhat unorthodox approach to using cannabis, Tom will discuss how to get healthy without getting high, what types of products give the best results, how to get the right dose and most importantly how to save money.


tom_tincture.jpgTom has developed a tincture marketed under the Grandpa Tom label that many patients have found to be extremely beneficial.


Mark your calendar now to attend one of these special November MAPP meetings.


Riverside/Western IE MAPP meeting – Wednesday, November 2 at 7:30 p.m. at the historic THCF Patient Center, 647 Main St. Unit 4D, Riverside 92501.


Palm Springs/Coachella Valley MAPP meeting - Saturday, November 5 at 12 noon at the new age palace Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, downtown Palm Springs 92262.


Saturday, November 5 at 3 p.m. - Morongo Basin/Joshua Tree MAPP meeting at the legendary Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree 92252

If you like this newsletter and
want to show your support
and help us continue to do
what we do then please

Join our 420 Club and Donate $4.20/month



Empowering Women and
Leveraging MJ into
Mainstream Stores
on Internet Radio Show
CLICK HERE to listen now!

Add your reaction Share

Prop. 64 Will Not End Prohibition! What Will?


problem.jpgEnding Prohibition Only Will Happen
with Safe, Reliable, Local and

In my Sept. 25, 2016 newsletter, I wrote about MMRSA vs. AUMA discussing just how bad MCRSA (MMRSA has been renamed the Medical Cannabis Regulatory and Safety Act) is highlighting its complex licensing system, allowing cities and counties to ban ALL personal and commercial medicinal marijuana cultivation, ban all commercial distribution and requiring the Calif. Medical Board to crack down on doctors writing “excessive” medical marijuana recs.


light_bulb.jpgI then wrote how AUMA addresses some of these problems by prohibiting cities and counties from banning indoor and greenhouse cultivation, eliminating the transport license, (arguably the most onerous of all the licenses), by protecting the rights of parents to use and grow medical marijuana without having their children taken away, eliminating state sales taxes for patients with the ID card and, what I consider to be one of AUMA’s most redeeming features, the elimination, after five years, of commercial cultivation size limits allowing farmers to  engage in large scale cultivation and production of marijuana like any other agricultural crop.


coffee.jpgThis would result in a steep drop in prices as the high cost of marijuana is a result of its production costs and not its taxes. I opined that having a pound of marijuana at that same price as a pound of coffee, before taxes, would not be unreasonable.


If you would like re-read the column or read it if you are now interested in reading it for the first time CLICK HERE.


receive_email.jpgI did receive a number of huzzahs for the column, but I also did receive two comments disparaging what I wrote. Surprisingly they both focused on my comments approving AUMA’s lifting of any cultivation size limits and made no mention of any of the other reasons I provided for why AUMA is a pretty good deal. I would like to share one of them with you as I believe it gets to the core of the differences in outlook of pro-64 and anti-64 people.


All these assumptions are being presented as facts. That sounds like propaganda. We have no idea what the cost will be if 64 passes. If the price falls as much as Lanny claims what will that do to the small growers who have risked their lives for decades to provide us some of the finest herb in the world. I believe in fair trade and think a grower’s hard work should provide a livable wage. It sounds like AUMA will be a death kneel for these family farms. If all you care about is cheap weed you can buy Mexican for a few hundred dollars a pound. I think there is more at stake here than just cheap buds. Sounds like a government/corporate takeover, industrial pot, heartless capitalism. AUMA is the death of cannabis culture, of caring, fairness, peace, love and music. Replaced by government controls and the heartless concern of money. And we are being asked to do this to ourselves. AUMA is 62 very hard to understand pages for a reason. They don't want yo u to read it. Please take the time to read and understand what this really is. We can do much better. -  Lonnie Painter, Director Laguna Woods Medical Cannabis Collective and President Village Cannabis Club.


chicken_looking_u.jpgAUMA is the death of cannabis culture, of caring, fairness, peace, love and music?” Really? I will ascribe that kind of “statement-of-fact” to enthusiastic-for-the-anti-64-cause PT Barnum hyperbole. If you believe it’s true, nothing I write here will make any sense to you and you might as well stop reading now.


money_wrapped_around_marijuana.jpgThat being said Lonnie is absolutely right that Prop. 64 will be the “death kneel for these family farms,” most of which are illegal as well as “the small growers who have risked their lives for decades to provide us some of the finest herb in the world” which was, until recently if I remember correctly, being sold by them for $2,000 to $3,000 a pound.


When I got involved in the marijuana movement over thirty years ago, there were two goals that I wanted to help achieve. One was to stop the arrests of people for using and cultivating marijuana and two was to make marijuana as affordable as alcohol and tobacco. I feel closer to both goals then I have ever felt before.


80_yrs_prohibition_ends.jpgAfter almost 80 years of reefer madness we are coming out of the age of marijuana prohibition, but sadly there are some folks who, along with cops and drug warriors, don’t want to see that happen.


Supporting keeping a marijuana production system in place that for the last 20 years has kept marijuana at $200/ounce or more is beyond all rational belief as it continues to make it impossible for many to afford all the marijuana they need for medicine or recreation. This is not only crazy, it is inhumane, callous and hurts people in the lower economic brackets the most.


AUMA will substantially reduce the price for marijuana as it provides for large-scale agriculture which is the basis for our California agricultural system that provides food for the nation and the world.


The California Department of Food and Agriculture reports that the state produces almost half of all the fruits, nuts and vegetables grown in the country. Along with the lion’s share of livestock and dairy products, there are 66 food crops in which California leads the nation, growing virtually ALL of the nation’s almonds, artichokes, dates, figs, raisins, kiwifruit, olives, clingstone peaches, pistachios, prunes, pomegranates, sweet rice and walnuts.


large_scale_ag.jpgCalifornia is a major food producer for our country and can produce food at such low prices because of the economies of scale obtained on the state’s 25.4 million acres of farmland with an average farm size of 312 acres. And California’s farmers do this with farm workers comprising less than 2% of the state’s total work force.


Brokering the idea that California agriculture could produce so prodigiously and economically on farms restricted in size to one acre has got to be near the top of the list of irrational statements and makes one wonder what people who support restricting cultivation size have been drinking,


Does any rational person believe that carrots would be 49¢/lb. if farmers were forced to grow carrots like growers are forced to cultivate marijuana? Carrots would be $149/lb.scream.jpg

Marijuana consumers deserve the benefits of California’s amazing large-scale agricultural system which will provide them with quality marijuana at prices that are truly affordable. To deny them these benefits on the altar of marijuana cultural Kumbaya and a Robin Hood mythology of outlaw growers is absurd beyond belief.


smash_capitalism.jpgflag_corporate_sysmbols.jpgFear that a few large companies will produce a sizeable portion of marijuana production is to live in a Pollyanna world divorced from reality. From toothpaste to laundry detergent, just about every product that is used by tens of millions of Americans is produced and distributed by a handful of large companies. There may be other competitors but the bulk of sales are made by a few large companies. Some people might not like this capitalist system, but it works fairly well in getting the most product to the most people at the most affordable price.


What could pass as a legitimate fear is the fear that one company can take control of the entire cultivation and production process. If that is a fear, then AUMA with its no state imposed limit on licenses including a “microbusiness” license, is just what the doctor ordered.


small_groers.jpgsmall_growerr_women.jpgThe microbusiness license is the guarantee in AUMA that the small independent grower will always be there.  If allowed under local ordinance, the “microbusiness” license allows small producers to cultivate up to 10,000 sq. ft. (about ¼ acre) and to process, distribute, transport and sell marijuana as well as have on-site consumption with just that one license.


AUMA’s microbusiness license is a kissing cousin to the wine industry where there are three major players - Gallo, The Wine Group and Constellation. Then there are about a dozen large vintners and most significantly over 4,000 small independent wineries. Low prices to high prices, mediocre to fit for a king – wine enthusiasts have it all.


With the microbusiness license available, the same will be true for marijuana - low prices to high prices, mediocre to fit for a king – marijuana enthusiasts will have it all. The number of small family owned marijuana cultivators will rapidly dwarf the independent wineries in both terms of numbers and dollars taken in.


AUMA will bring to an end the production system that came of age with the advent of marijuana prohibition in 1937. It is as transformative for those seeking safe, reliable, local and affordable marijuana as was the move from horses to automobiles.


horseless_carriage.jpgRemember there were laws designed to make horseless carriage operation difficult - having some one walk in front waving a red flag, not exceeding 4 miles an hour, and stopping if anyone with a horse coming the other way held up a hand. As more people used cars, those laws faded and more reasonable ones took their place. AUMA is the beginning of those more reasonable laws but it is only a beginning.


AUMA promise of affordability has to be carefully guarded and nurtured as AUMA’s provisions allowing large-scale cultivation do not kick in until 2023. In deference to the growers who “risked their lives for decades” to provide $2,500/ lb. marijuana to the masses, AUMA prohibits the issuance of large-scale licenses for 5 years.


If we waited 80 years for marijuana to be sold for the same price it was sold in neighborhood drugstores before 1937, then I guess we can wait another five years.


goofy_bug_eye.pngConsumers of marijuana must be alert and oganized at the end of AUMA’s 5 year cultivation size restriction. The legislature will come under enormous pressure from the small growers who accumulated sizeable profits from the anti-competitive protection they received by not allowing large scale cultivation and allowing the marijuana prohibition model of cultivation to continue. I am sure the cops will be there too doing their best to undermine marijuana affordability by claiming that large farms will attract kids and cause drivers to drive erratically as they pass fields of thousands of acres of cannabis.


agenices.jpgThe legislature may also be under pressure from government agencies to not allow large scale cultivation. Since most of the tax revenue raised by the sale of marijuana, both on the state and local level, is based on price, a significant drop in prices that comes with large scale farming will cause a significant drop in tax revenues.


marijuana_gavel.jpgLegislators could raise the excise tax but that would take a 2/3 majority vote. Allowing the marijuana prohibition production method to continue would only require a simple majority guaranteeing an uninterrupted flow of lots and lots of marijuana tax dollars.

Without large scale cultivation, big business will be much more hesitant to move-in so the question is who will be at the state legislature lobbying for large scale farming to kick-in?


grange.pngAlthough some big businesses with their sights on California marijuana industry might step-in, it would make more sense that if AUMA passes we should start an immediate dialog with California farmers. With a value significantly higher than many other crops, farmers will understand the potential for this new crop and lobby for large-scale marijuana cultivation. We need to work with them so that we can all enjoy the real-world benefits of a very large environmentally sound crop that is ideally suited for California’s Central and Imperial Valleys.


pathway.jpgProp. 64 is not the end of marijuana prohibition, but it is a humane, workable and viable pathway out of it. It is a pathway that we should look forward to taking.


aimee_warner.jpgMAPP_Logo.jpgAIMEE WARNER
Empowering Women and
Leveraging MJ into
Mainstream Stores
on Internet Radio Show


The newest episode of Marijuana Compassion & Common Sense at dives into the world of marijuana commerce and marijuana women featuring an interview with Washington entrepreneur Aimee Warner. As the organizer of Women of Weed, a Washington based private social club, Aimee helps to empower women to get involved in the cannabis industry and to be open and proud of their cannabis use.

cannabasic.pngRecently featured in an article by John Schroyer in the Marijuana Business Daily, she is the founder of Cannabis Basics, a company manufacturing body care products infused with hemp seed oil that may be the first marijuana company to get a THC cannabis-based health and beauty product line on the shelves of mainline retail stores. To read the Marijuana Business Daily article CLICK HERE.

Initiative 502, the voter approved law that legalized the use of marijuana for anyone over 21, didn’t fit her business model, so she lobbied Washington state lawmakers for an exception and succeeded in getting an amendment to House Bill 2136 through the legislature last year that would allow her products to be sold in stores not licensed to sell marijuana.


Aimee also works with and the American Cannabis Nurses Association.


Lanny_in_studio.JPGHosting and interviewing is Lanny Swerdlow, RN with each episode presenting commentary on current marijuana issues as well as the featured interview. To hear the latest episode featuring the interview with Aimee Warner CLICK HERE or go to:

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VA Reneges on IE MMJ Vets - Gov. Signs & Vetos - MAPP meet


Wed. Oct 5 meeting to address
problems and take action

loma_linda_va_bldg.jpgThere have been a number of reports from veterans in the IE receiving services at the VA’s Loma Linda facility that they have been denied services because of their use of marijuana medicinally. This is especially distressing as many had thought this problem had been resolved as the result of a veterans meeting hosted by US Congressman Raul Ruiz on March 12, 2015 in Desert Hot Springs.


Barbara_Fallon.jpgPresent at the meeting was Barbara Fallen, Director of the VA Loma Linda Healthcare System. A number of vets at the meeting complained about being denied services because of their use of marijuana medicinally. Ms. Fallen assured the vets and Congressman Ruiz that this problem would be looked into and that vets would not be denied services for their use of marijuana.


That this had actually taken place was confirmed by several vets who reported they were reinstated to the programs that they had been terminated from. It appeared that Loma Linda VA had indeed revised their program and there was no longer any problems.


downey.jpgUnfortunately something has changed and there are now reports again of veterans being denied services for medical marijuana use. Ronie Downey, one of the vets who spoke at the original meeting, has been encountering severe difficulties in accessing pain relief services. I have also had reports from other vets of similar problems.


This is an untenable situation especially in this time when medical marijuana has become such an accepted form of treatment for many vets and the Obama Administration and Congress has restrained the Dept. of Justice from interfering with a state’s medical marijuana laws. What has happened at Loma Linda needs to be immediately looked into and corrected ASAP.


To start the process going, there will be a meeting of veterans and supporters to develop the groundwork to begin a dialogue with Ms. Fallen and other administrators at Loma Linda VA as well as the offices of Congressmen Raul Ruiz and Mark Takano, who is a member of the Veterans Services committee in the U.S. House of Representatives.


no_mj.jpgIf you are a veteran and have been denied services or received inadequate services at the Loma Linda VA Hospital facilities as a result of your use of marijuana medicinally, it is especially important for you to attend the meeting to address this situation. Ronie Downey will be speaking of the problems he has been encountering. Another veteran who has encountered severe problems will also be discussing his situation and it is imperative to hear from other vets in similar situations.


The meeting will be held on Wed. October 5 at 6 p.m. at the THCF Patient Center, located at 647 Main St., Unit 4D, Riverside CA 92501. All are welcome to stay for the MAPP meeting immediately following the veterans meeting. (See information at end of this newsletter for information on the MAPP meeting.)

brown_multi_sign.jpgGovernor Brown Signs
and Vetoes Critical Bills

The California Legislature passed a passel of legislation that affect MMJ and MJ users and sent it to the Governor for his signature. As usual, Gov. Brown pulled some surprises out of his hat with those he signed and those he vetoed.

 Historic Asset Forfeiture Reform Bill Signed by Governor

police_for_profit.jpgArguably the most significant piece of reform legislation was SB 443 by Sen. Holly Mitchell that for just about the first time ever, significantly reformed California’s asset forfeitures laws, one of the most egregious usurping’s of our 4th amendment constitutional protections.


This bill will significantly curtail the odious practice of “policing for profit” by requiring police to return assets seized from innocent people by requiring that a conviction must obtained before the seized assets can be kept by police unless the assets seized exceed $40,000. Since the average value of assets seized is in the neighborhood of $8,500, the signing of this bill by Gov. Brown will severely curtail the use of this despicable practice by police.


small_mj_grower.jpgGovernor Signs Small MMJ Growers Bill

Assemblymember Jim Wood’s “Cottage Cannabis Farmers Bill,” AB 2516, created a new medical cannabis cultivator license category for “micro farmers.”


The new law will allow small medical cannabis growers to comply with the complex regulations enacted by the Medical Cannabis Regulatory and Safety Act by requiring the California Department of Food and Agriculture to develop and streamline regulations by 2018 specifically for small farm growers.


The technical requirements for the new type 1C specialty cottage cultivator license are designed for an individual farm with 2,500 square feet or less of total canopy size for mixed-light cultivation, up to 25 mature plants for outdoor cultivation, or 500 square feet or less of total canopy size for indoor cultivation only. Gov. Browns signature on this legislation should ensure the ability of these small growers to continue to operate competitively with larger grow operations.


MMJ Manufacturing Safety Bill Gets Gov. Brown’s Signature

AB 2679, authored by Assemblymember Rob Bonta, establishes standards for medical cannabis manufacturers requiring them to abide by strict standards designed to ensure the safety of the manufacturing process.


The signing of the bill by Gov. Brown and its eventual implementation will hopefully end the raids that have been conducted against the manufacturers of specialty medical marijuana products.


prop_D.jpgLA’s Proposition D dealt a blow
by veto of AB 2385

Sponsored by Assemblymember Reggie Jones-Sawyer, Sr., AB 2385 would have carved out an exemption for a limited number of commercial cannabis applicants and allowed them to operate without a local license, if they met requirements specified by the City of Los Angeles' Measure D and the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act.


Supported by the coalition of lawmakers who crafted MCRSA and a wide spectrum of the medical cannabis industry, Governor Brown unexpectedly vetoed the measure stating, "This bill is inconsistent with the dual licensing requirement established last year by the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act."


The only organization opposed to AB 2385 was the Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force, an organization opposed to Measure D’s granting of licenses only to dispensaries operating before 2007. Labeling the veto as “fair and inclusive" the organization stated that we can now “fix Proposition D so that new business and entrepreneurs can thrive in LA."


MAPP meeting
Wednesday, Oct. 5
at 7:30 p.m.

Patient Access Under MCRSA
What are the 2016 Changes?

don_2.jpgDon Duncan, Board Member and Founder of Americans for Safe Access, will present information on the Medical Cannabis Regulatory and Safety Act and the changes to it enacted by the 2016 Legislature. Going into effect beginning in 2017, MCRSA will have a profound impact on how patients access medical marijuana. With rule making on its many provisions still to be made, Don will discuss how patients can get involved in the rule making process of MCRSA and other legislative actions in order to protect and enhance patient access.


There will also be a short presentation made summarizing what occurred at the Veterans MMJ meeting.


cookies_and_milk.jpgThe MAPP meeting on Wed. Oct. 5 begins at 7:30 pm. and is held at the historic THCF Medical Clinic, 647 Main St., Unit 4D, Riverside 92501. Milk, punch and a delightful assortment of cookies will be available.


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pot_committed.jpgcalif_mj_leaf.jpgMMRSA vs. AUMA

Laying the cards on the table

The Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act (MMRSA) is a tangled web of regulations, licensing and taxation that is a testament to the inability of medical marijuana patients to get state legislators to enact laws implementing both the spirit and purpose of Prop. 215. It is complex, unwieldly and unfair and was enacted at the behest of cops and their puppets in the League of California Cities to undermine Prop. 215 and make it nearly impossible for most patients to reliably, safely, affordably and locally access marijuana.


money_mj.jpgAlthough MMRSA sets up 18 licensing categories, it appears to be working in those few localities that have followed this legislative labyrinth. With its blank check allowing cities to have total control over the production and distribution of marijuana including enacting total bans, the only thing MMRSA absolutely guarantees for patients is that marijuana will remain exorbitantly expensive.


Although under MMRSA cultivation and distribution may be done for profit, cultivation size is restricted to 22,000 sq. ft. indoors and one acre outdoors. Vertical integration where a person or business can hold more than one license is severely restricted. The limits on cultivation and vertical integration should make those who fear big business taking over medical marijuana production and distribution breathe much easier, but it is also the main reason marijuana will remain exorbitantly expensive.


mj_ban.jpgbuying_mj.jpgMMRSA allows cities and counties to ban all mmj patient cultivation – indoors and outdoors. Patients still retain the right to use marijuana, but they must either buy it or have someone give it to them for free. If the city or county also bans any commercial distribution then those patients will either have to travel long distances to obtain marijuana or, as most will be doing, buying it from criminals.


MMRSA also seeks to curtail the writing of medical marijuana recommendations as it legislates against "Repeated acts of clearly excessive recommending of cannabis for medical purposes, or repeated acts of recommending without a good faith prior exam." It requires the Calif. Medical Board to make the enforcement of this provision a priority.


mmj_doc_sign.jpgIf doctors cut back on their writing of mmj recommendations and if the doctor offices that specialize in the writing of mmj recommendations cut back or even close under stricter scrutiny by the medical board, many patients may no longer be able to obtain recommendations and those that do will most likely have to pay considerably more than they have paid in the past.


stop_mj_arrest.jpgThe Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA), more popularly known as Prop. 64 now that is has been assigned a number, legalizes the use, purchase and cultivation of marijuana for adults 21 and older. Cultivation of up to 6 plants per household is permitted. Although you can only leave your home with an ounce or less, you are permitted to possess all the marijuana your plants produce in your home.

Prop. 64 retains most of the unwieldly, complex and unfair regulation and licensing scheme of MMRSA. One notable exception is that the onerous transport license has been eliminated. This license has always been a major bone of contention as it will add somewhere between 15% to 30% to the cost of marijuana


The lack of a transport license is why the Teamsters Union opposes Prop. 64. The United Food and Commercial Workers Union supports Prop. 64 but that is because they are mainly concerned with workers engaged in distribution of marijuana and not transportation.


outdoor_mj_large.pngUnlike MMRSA which restricts the size of indoor cultivation to 22,000 sq. ft. and outdoor cultivation to one acre, five years after the implementation of Prop. 64, all cultivation size limits are removed allowing farmers to cultivate hundreds, if not thousands of acres, obtaining an economy of scale that will finally bring the price of marijuana way down.


Exactly how far down is a good question, but it would not be unreasonable to expect marijuana to sell for about the same as coffee which is not grown in this country, is extremely labor intensive, has to be shipped thousands of miles and requires significant processing before being delivered to the consumer.


The reason large scale cultivation is not permitted during the first five years is to give current growers, almost none of whom even come close to a medium cultivation size let alone a large scale cultivation size, a five year monopoly on cultivation which will keep prices high but also should give them large enough profits to buy large swaths of farm land so that they can engage in large scale cultivation.


greenhouse_small.jpgAlthough Prop. 64 allows cities and counties to ban outdoor cultivation, it specifically denies them the right allowed under MMRSA to ban indoor cultivation “inside a private residence, or inside an accessory structure to a private residence located upon the grounds of a private residence that is fully enclosed and secure.”


Note the words “accessory structure” – a greenhouse would be considered an accessory structure.


MMRSA requires the California Medical Board to make it a “priority” to crack down on doctors who issue “excessive” medical marijuana recommendations. If a patient could no longer obtain a recommendation, they would still be able to obtain marijuana under Prop. 64 although the amounts they can possess and what they can cultivate would be significantly less than if they had a doctor’s recommendation.


Under current law, including MMRSA, Children Protective Services can take your children. Prop.64 for the first time ever protects patients from having their children taken by CPS.


children_parents.jpg11362.84. The status and conduct of a qualified patient who acts in accordance with the Compassionate Use Act shall not, by itself, be used to restrict or abridge custodial or parental rights to minor children in any action or proceeding under the jurisdiction of family or juvenile court.


It doesn’t protect parents who are adult non-medical marijuana users – a glaring oversight but if you are only concerned with how Prop. 64 protects patients, then this omission should be of no concern.


id_card.jpgProp. 64 also eliminates sales taxes for medical marijuana patients who obtain the state ID card. The cost of the card is reduced to $100, half-price for those on Medi-Cal and even eliminates the charge altogether for those who are indigent. Depending on how much you buy annually, it may or may not pay to get the card.


Prop. 64 does impose an excise tax of 15% on all marijuana sales and a bud weight tax of $9.25 per ounce. The same tax was to be applied to MMRSA but was defeated in the state legislature as legislators want to wait to see if Prop. 64 passes which would make it unnecessary to add a new mmj tax. When large scale cultivation kicks in and the price plummets to double digits for a pound, taxes based on cost would not be of much concern.


no_smoking.pngOne of the few parts that will negatively impact patients is that in order to appeal to those voters whose worst fear is that they might be exposed to second hand marijuana smoke while smoking their cigarettes or cigars, Prop. 64 bans all public consumption even in areas where tobacco consumption is allowed. However, Prop. 64 does permit city and counties to allow on site consumption something that MMRSA does not allow. Cannabis clubs and cafes anyone?


MMRSA is what patients will have to live with whether they like it or not.  Some people claim MMRSA is unconstitutional and will be overturned by the California Supreme Court, but many of them are the same people who claimed that allowing cities to ban mmj collectives under their zoning ordinances was unconstitutional.


Most attorneys are taking to heart the concluding statement in City of Riverside vs. IEPHWC:

Of course, nothing prevents future efforts by the Legislature, or by the People, to adopt a different approach.


Sure looks like the Supremes are giving a green light for the Legislature to do whatever it wants. Many attorneys who once thought that banning collectives under zoning ordinances would be unconstitutional are not making the same mistake twice i.e. they believe betting the bank on MMRSA being declared unconstitutional is ill-advised.


Finally there is the meme circulating that Prop. 64 will end the rights of patients under Prop. 215 rather than enhance them as described above. One of the most authoritative papers written on this subject is by attorney William Panzer.


panzer.jpgWidely recognized as one of the most knowledgeable marijuana attorneys in California, William Panzer has been practicing criminal law in the San Francisco/Oakland Bay Area for seventeen years. Unlike so many others who claim a hand in the drafting of Prop. 215, Panzer actually was a co-author of the Compassionate Use Act.


Panzer has represented patients, growers, and medical cannabis dispensaries throughout California in state and federal court, at both the trial and appellate levels. He was the 2002 recipient of the NORML Legal Committee's Al Horn Award, and has been recognized by High Times Magazine as their "Freedom Fighter of the Month."


I strongly urge you to take a couple minutes and read William Panzer’s authoritative analysis of how Prop. 64 will impact Prop. 215. To read it CLICK HERE.


Millennials, Canada &
the New Revised MMRSA

The first of the month is upon us – time to mark your calendar for the October MAPP meetings. Like last month, there will be different presentations at each meeting. Come to the one nearest you or make that long drive and go to all three.


Norberto_Gonzalez.jpgSat. Oct. 1 at 12 noon – Palm Springs/Coachella Valley meeting features Norberto Gonzalez speaking on Millennials and the 2016 Election. Norberto is the campaign manager for Greg Rodriquez who is a candidate for the 42nd State Assembly District and has been actively involved in politics for several years. Millennials are becoming a big voting block, second only to baby boomers. They are the most progressive and inclusive generation of voters ever and will have a major effect on the 2016 elections and onward - if they come out to vote. Norberto will discuss how they will effect the 2016 elections and how the marijuana legalization initiative will bring them to the polls.

Meeting takes place at the magical Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon in downtown Palm Springs 92262.


canadian_flag.jpgSat. Oct. 1 at 3 p.m. – Joshua Tree/Morongo Valley meeting features a presentation on what is happening in Canada. I just came back from a week in British Columbia where marijuana has become widely available even in rural areas. From my experience at a medical marijuana dispensary to conversations with Canadians on the prospect of the Trudeau government following through on its commitment to legalize marijuana in 2017, Canada is leading the way in North America for ending marijuana prohibition.


Meeting to be held at the iconoclastic Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree 92252.

don_duncan.jpgWed. Oct. 5 at 7:30 p.m. – Riverside/Western IE meeting features Don Duncan, Board Member and Founder of Americans for Safe Access. The 2015 Legislature made changes to MMRSA and Don will discuss how these changes will affect patients. Information will also be presented on how patients can get involved in the rule making process of MMRSA and other legislative actions in order to protect and enhance patient access.


Meeting to be held at the historic THCF Medical Clinic, 647 Main St., Unit 4D, Riverside 92501.


Milk, punch and a delightful assortment of cookies will be available at all three meetings.


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Can Gary Johnson Defeat Clinton & Trump?

Judge James Gray Tells How

at MAPP meeting Wednesday Sept. 7 at 7:30 p.m.
plus Win a Boundless Technology Vaporizer

clintump_approval.jpgAn ABC/Washington Post poll released last Wednesday found a common nominator amongst Democrat, Republican and Independent voters – they don’t like either of the Presidential candidates. With 60% of voters having a negative opinion of his candidacy, Trump won the poll, but Clinton is right on his tail with a 59% unfavorable rating.


johnson_vote_me.jpgIn what is becoming another “lesser of two evils” election, it would seem a golden opportunity for a third party candidate to make inroads into America’s monolithic two party system. With almost 10% of voters expressing their desire for the candidacy of former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson, it would seem that the Libertarians have an once-in-a-lifetime chance to finally be taken seriously by voters.


mt._everest.jpgIf Johnson could increase his standing to 15% of the voters, he could participate in what is being predicted to be the most watched Presidential debate since the first Kennedy-Nixon debate in 1960. With most voters not enamored of either Clinton or Trump, the lean and rugged (he climbed Mr. Everest) Johnson is the anti-thesis to what most voters see as Trump’s bombastic buffoonery and Clinton’s calculated chicanery.


Although Trump will most likely lose more voters to Johnson than Clinton, it is very likely that Johnson could win enough electoral votes to prevent either Clinton or Trump from obtaining a majority of the 538 electoral votes and hence the Presidency. With no candidate receiving a majority, the decision on who is to become President will be decided by the U.S. House of Representatives which almost certainly will still be controlled by Republicans.hose_of_reps.jpg


Curious on how that little imbroglio will be handled? The National Records and Archives Commission has provided the answer:


If no candidate receives a majority of Electoral votes, the House of Representatives elects the President from the 3 Presidential candidates who received the most Electoral votes. Each state delegation has one vote.


Any bets on who that may be? It's not likely to be Clinton but could it be Johnson?


gray_and_johnson.jpgSo who is Gary Johnson? Judge James Gray knows as he was Gov. Johnson’s V.P. running mate in the 2012 elections where they received over 1.2 million votes representing 1% of the popular vote.


At the Wednesday, September 7 meeting of the Marijuana Anti-Prohibition Project, James Gray, retired Orange County Superior Court Judge, ardent advocate for ending marijuana prohibition and the War on Drugs and author of the seminal treatise Why the Drug War Has Failed and What We Can Do About It, will provide the answer.


Judge Gray believes the Libertarian Party’s has a solution to the current presidential conundrum and that is their candidate for President, Governor Gary Johnson. Judge Gray will provide a run down on Gov. Johnson personal and political qualifications, his position on many issues facing the country and, of course, Gov. Johnson’s position on marijuana and drug law reform


lib_pot_cartoon.jpgHe will also explain the Libertarian Party’s unique governing philosophy emphasizing personal freedom and a free-market economy. Although the Democratic Party for the first-time ever included a plank in the national party platform calling for “a pathway to legalization,” the Libertarian Party has a long history of supporting ending marijuana and drug prohibition.


Gov. Johnson is polling around 10% of likely voters and needs to increase that level of support to 15% in order to be included in the Presidential debates.Judge Gray will lay out the road map to that magic 15% number. Learn about Gov. Johnson and maybe you might be one of those people to be polled who say they favor Gov. Gary Johnson for President.


For more information on Gov. Johnson CLICK HERE. For more information on Judge James Gray CLICK HERE. For a hilarious but insightful look at Clinton, Trump and Johnson, CLICK HERE.

vape_2.jpg vape_3.jpgAn exciting addition and bonus to the MAPP meeting will come from representatives from Boundless Vape Technology who will make a presentation on their line of innovative vaporizers featuring the latest advances in vaporization technology. They will be giving away, not one, but two of their quality vaporizers at the meeting. To learn more about Boundless Vape and see their complete line of vaporizers, CLICK HERE.


MAPP_Logo.jpgJudge Gray’s presentation and the Boundless Vaporizer demonstration and giveaway is taking place at the monthly meeting of the Marijuana Anti-Prohibition Project on Wed. Sept. 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the THCF Patient Center, 647 Main St., Unit 4D, Riverside CA 92501. The meeting is open to the public and there is no charge for admission.


cant_we_get_a_bong.jpg thc_sticker.jpgGREAT NEWS


A new report issued by the National Institute of Drug Abuse has found that over 13% of adults in the U.S. have used marijuana up from 10% in 2002.


dr_compton.jpgAccording to study’s author, Dr. Wilson Compton, deputy director of the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse, "This increase has corresponded with the legal and social acceptance of marijuana, and so it is not such a surprise."


According to Steven Reinberg, senior reporter at, what might have surprised NIDA researchers is their finding that “despite greater usage, rates of marijuana abuse or dependence held steady in the general population at about 1.5 percent from 2002 to 2014. But among pot users only, the rate of marijuana abuse or dependence dropped from 15 percent to 11 percent.”


feelng_good.jpgAs many of you know from your own personal experience, marijuana use has not only been enjoyable, but beneficial for your physical, mental and social health. As more Americans either return to or start using marijuana, the increasing use of marijuana will have an overall positive and beneficial impact on our communities.


To read the report of the study at CLICK HERE.


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WeedMap's Fraud & Securiy Breach Exposed - Upland Joins Total Ban Bandwagon - MAPP meets


weedmap_logo.png la_times.pngLOS ANGELES TIMES

Fraudulent Reviews & Lax Security


From Volkswagen cheating on emissions tests to the Ponzi schemes of Bernard Madoff, government and media love to take the bows for protecting the public from greedy, unsavory and corrupt businesses but now they seem poised to add marijuana consumers to their list of people they are willing to go to bat for.


mag_glass.jpgOn August 24, the LA Times published an expose of Weedmaps, the multi-million dollar marijuana directory service which helps marijuana consumers find marijuana because after almost 20 years of legal medical marijuana, they still cannot go to their neighborhood mega grocery store to purchase this ancient medicinal plant.


Note this investigation was undertaken not by some marijuana magazine or even some muckraking crusading alternative news magazine or media outlet, but by the largest daily newspaper in California and the 4th largest in the nation.


weedmap_review.jpgThe LA Times article alleges that “a key feature — user reviews of pot businesses — may be tainted by thousands of potentially fraudulent comments” and “a separate analysis looking at the text in reviews estimates that 62% of all dispensary comments on Weedmaps are fake.”


The expose gets even better as apparently anyone who ever submitted a review of a dispensary to Weedmaps had their IP address revealed in Weedmaps’ publicly accessible code which made these outside and independent analyses possible.


ip.pngThe LA Times noted “An IP address isn’t enough on its own to definitively identify a user, but the string of numbers could be the first clue to unmask marijuana users. It can be enough to match a physical address, hack into someone’s Wi-Fi network or lure them into a cyberattack.”


Weedmaps ceased exposing reviewers’ IP addresses in its publicly accessible code two days after the article was published.


To read the entire LA Times article, and it’s a doozy, CLICK HERE.


upland_seal.jpgUPLAND JUMPS ON THE

There’s A Couple Flies in the Soup


The City of Upland, which has closed 24 mmj dispensaries in the last two years, is rushing faster than a speeding bullet to enact an ordinance banning just about everything marijuana before the November 6 ballot. They are determined to make it as difficult as humanly and technologically possible to obtain marijuana should Prop. 64 pass. The proposed ban is a total and complete ban on all cultivating, dispensing, transporting, distributing, processing, labeling and testing of marijuana.


upland_council_meet.jpgOn August 24, Upland's Planning Commission voted 6-1 to send the total ban to the City Council for an expected vote on September 12. It should be noted that the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin reported that the “meeting brought out about 30 residents, all who spoke in favor of the ban.”


dispensary_banned.jpgIf enacted, Upland will be joining several other IE cities, as well as San Bernardino County, in enacting total bans although San Bernardino County’s does allow for indoor and greenhouse cultivation. The ban would become effective 30 days after it is approved thereby meeting the deadline to be in place should voters pass Prop. 64.


There is an interesting insertion to the tale that could toss a monkey wrench into Upland’s total ban as there will be two marijuana initiatives on the Upland ballot that could undo portions of their much touted anti-marijuana scheme. There is the statewide Prop. 64 initiative and there is also a local medical marijuana initiative – a little noticed initiative that ballooned into a major tax case.


money_mj.jpgThe medical marijuana initiative included a licensing fee of $75,000 for each of the dispensaries that received one of the coveted licenses. The fee was supposed to cover the expenses the city would incur during the licensing process but the city argued that $75,000 is considerably in excess of what its costs would be and therefore it was a tax and not a fee.


upland_petition_turn_in.jpgEven though the petitioners had submitted enough signatures to require a special election the city refused to call a special election claiming the $75,000 licensing fee is a tax and state law requires all new taxes to be voted on in a general election setting the election for the November 2016 ballot.


The initiative petitioners took the city to court over their refusal to hold a special election and in a March 2016 decision the 4th District Court of Appeals ruled against the city concluding the city erred when it chose to not hold a special election.


Howard-Jarvis-4-color-Logo.jpgConcerned that if the decision allowing the $75,000 to be considered a license fee and not a tax, local and national tax avoidance organizations sent out the alarm that it would create a back door in which local government’s could pass or implement a local tax without putting it to the vote of the people as required by state law. Although the city was ready to throw in the towel, they were given a last minute reprieve when the Howard Jarvis Taxpayer Association agreed to cover the cost for attorney fees. The appeal of the 4th District Court decision is now headed to the California Supreme Court.


Since the local initiative will be on Upland’s November 2016 and the California Supreme Court will not be issuing an opinion anytime soon, whatever the court rules will have no effect on whether the initiative will be on the ballot. Along with Prop. 64, it will be on the Upland ballot.


vote_booth.jpgThe Upland voters will help decide whether marijuana will be legal in California as well as totally decide if there will be three dispensaries operating in Upland each paying a $75,000 licensing fee or tax depending on what the Supreme Court eventually decides it should be called.


If the local medical marijuana initiative passes, it will overturn the City Council’s ban on dispensaries. If Prop. 64 passes, it will overturn the City Council’s ban on indoor marijuana cultivation including greenhouses.



Subjects of September MAPP meetings


For those of you in the Inland Empire and for those of you who want to make a long drive, all the IE MAPP meetings deliver information you can use in a friendly and informal setting where you meet old friends, make new friends, network and recharge.

Each meeting his its own agenda and speaker – check them out and come to all three.


10 Rules for Dealing with Police – A powerful instructive video where you learn how to:

police.jpgDeal with traffic stops, street stops and police at your door

Know your rights and keep your cool,

Avoid common police tricks

Prevent humiliating searches.

Norm Stamper former Seattle Chief of Police has described this video as “Legally accurate, realistic and entertaining. This film will prepare you for how policing is done in America.”

A discussion on police practices in the IE, particularly relating to marijuana, will follow.

Meeting takes place at the bejeweled Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon in downtown Palm Springs 92262.


JOSHUA TREE/YUCCA VALLEY – Sat. Sept. 3 at 3 p.m. - 42nd Assembly Candidate Greg Rodriguez

greg.jpgInvolved with local issues from schools to human rights, Greg served as the District Director for Congressman Raul Ruiz. With a progressive and forward looking campaign, Greg will present his views on how the state legislature should deal with the many issues facing California today including the issues of medical and adult-use marijuana. For more information about Greg Rodriguez CLICK HERE.

Meeting to be held at the fabled Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree 92252.


RIVERSIDE/WESTERN IE – Wed. Sept. 7  at 7:30 p.m.– With temperatures a little cooler, the meeting returns to its usual location at the THCF Medical Clinic with featured speaker and honored guest Judge James Gray.

judge_gray.jpgJudge Gray is a retired Orange County Superior Court Judge and was the 2012 Libertarian Party’s nominee for Vice-President. Judge Gray will be discussing the Libertarian Party’s answer to the current presidential conundrum with information on their candidate for President, Governor Gary Johnson as well as how the Libertarian Party’s position on marijuana law reform bodes well for marijuana consumers.

Meeting to be held at the THCF Medical Clinic, 647 Main St., Unit 4D, Riverside 92501.

Punch, milk and a delectable assortment of cookies will be served at all three meetings.

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Hmong farmers at MAPP meet - Assemblyman Chad Mayes meet - Palm Springs & Joshua Tree MAPP meets

read_all_about_it_logo.jpg1. Hmong Cannabis Farmers at MAPP meet in San Bernardino Sat. August 3

2. Meet 42nd AD assemblyman Chad Mayes
Saturday August 6 in Yucca Valley

3. Palm Springs & Joshua Tree MAPP meetings

Western IE MAPP meeting to be held in San Bernardino
with Cannabis Social Soiree Before and After Meeting

As detailed in the last blog, the MAPP meeting on Wed. August 3 will be a truly remarkable event in terms of community involvement, consciousness raising and camaraderie. In California, a number of Hmong farms have been targeted for growing medicinal cannabis – most of the raids have been in Siskiyou, Lassen and Trinity Counties but two weeks ago, a Hmong farm was raided in Riverside County.


cultivator_pic.jpgWe need to defend our cultivators whether it is approaching retirement age hippy growers in Humboldt County or the Hmong in Riverside County. Whoever the target of law enforcement is when it comes to the cultivation of medical marijuana, it is of monumental concern because it continues to vilify our sources of marijuana while pushing a system down our throats that is unfair, complex, inordinately expensive and allows the banning of cultivation at the whim of local governments.


hmong_farm_view.jpgThese raids are outrageous no matter who is targeted, but to target the Hmong is monumentally outrageous. The Hmong were firmly on the American side fighting the North Vietnam communists alongside American troops with guns, ammunition and training provided by the U.S. military. 30,000 to 40,000 Hmong perished during that war and when the war was over, the Hmong were seen as traitors and had to flee their mountainous homelands for their lives.


hmong_refugees.jpgOver 250,000 came to the United States with almost 100,000 settling in California. As they were farmers in Vietnam, they became farmers in the United States and some of them have farmed cannabis in California. What has happened to the Hmong in Northern California and now Riverside will be the focus of the MAPP meeting this Wed. August 3.


At the meeting you will meet Mai Vue who has been working closely with the Hmong community in Trinity, Shasta and Lassen Counties and has made presentations on their behalf before city councils, county boards and community organizations. She never expected to be working here in the Inland Empire until her parent’s farm in Riverside County was raided two weeks ago, but she is now.


Mai__Peter__Mai_Lee_and_Peng-1.jpgThe raid of Mai’s parent’s farm has sent shockwaves throughout IE Hmong farmers and they fear who will be targeted next. Mai’s parents, Peter and Mai Lee (pictured her with Mai’s younger brother Peng) will be at the meeting along with several other Hmong farmers. You will have the unique opportunity to hear their stories and to personally meet them.


Stefan_Borst-Censullo.pngAlso in attendance will be their attorney Stefan Borst-Censullo discussing their legal conundrum, what is being done to defend them and how this might affect other Hmong farmers and medical marijuana cultivators in general.


This is a meeting that is sure to be as inspiring as it is alarming where not only will you hear about a most grievous situation, but be part of a discussion on how to develop a more rational and clearheaded commercial cultivation system in the Inland Empire.


In case you didn’t see the correction I sent out to last Wednesday’s newsletter, the date for the meeting is Wed. August 3. The meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. As this is a cannabis welcoming location, we are for the first time ever having pre-meeting socialization at 7 p.m. and an after-meeting soiree at 9 p.m. so bring some of your finest bud and relax and enjoy while you learn and participate. Light refreshments will be served.


DSC04203_(2).JPGThe meeting takes place at 1180 W. Highland Ave, San Bernardino 92405 conveniently located right off the 215 Freeway. Invite your friends and family to join you at the meeting.


Send me an email or call me at 760-799-2055 for more information. For a flyer about the meeting CLICK HERE.


Look forward to seeing you at this most audacious event.

Meet Assemblyman Chad Mayes

Sat. August 6 from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m.

If you live in the 42nd Assembly District, don’t miss this opportunity

to meet your state assembly member and lobby for medical marijuana issues he will be voting on


chad_mayes.jpg42nd District Assemblymember Chad Mayes is holding a Morning Constituent Discussion from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the The Roost at Hawk’s Landing restaurant at 55100 Martinez Trail, Yucca Valley 92284. The stated purpose of the meeting is for constituents to “Share Your Thoughts on Legislative and Community Issues.”

I will be going and I encourage everyone in the 42nd District to attend. There are number of medical marijuana tax issues that will be voted on in the Assembly in August as well as a critical asset forfeiture reform bill. If we do not let Assemblyman Mayes know our positions on these issues, then who will? Please join me at this important meeting for voters in the 42nd District which covers 29 Palms, down 62 to I-10 and then down the Coachella Valley to LaQuinta.


They are asking that people planning on coming RSVP at 760-346-6342. I can assure you that you will not be turned away if you do not RSVP, but it will give them an idea on how many people to expect so that adequate seating and whatever refreshment they are providing will be available.

  Palm Springs & Joshua Tree
MAPP Meetings Sat. Aug. 6

Palm Springs/ Coachella Valley MAPP meeting - Saturday, August 6 at 11:30 a.m.

Crystal Fantasy is presenting their monthly Medical Cannabis Education Day with showings and events. Our MAPP meeting is part of the Medical Cannabis Education Day. Topics to be covered will include information on the meeting with Assemblyman Chad Mayes, an analysis of Democratic and Republican conventions and positions on marijuana legalization, the raid on IE Hmong Cannabis farmers and somewhat alarming new research into second hand marijuana smoke.

Meeting to be held at Crystal Fantasy, 268 N. Palm Canyon, downtown Palm Springs 92262.

Yucca Valley/Joshua Tree MAPP meeting - Saturday, August 6 at 3 p.m.

Topics to be covered will include information on the meeting with Assemblyman Chad Mayes, an analysis of Democratic and Republican conventions and positions on marijuana legalization, the raid on IE Hmong Cannabis farmers and somewhat alarming new research into second hand marijuana smoke.

Meeting to be held at the fabled Beatnik Lounge, 61597 Twenty-Nine Palms Hwy., Joshua Tree 92252






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The Hmong, Cannabis & Riverside Co. - A Tragic Tale Twice Told

The story of the Hmong people and their tragic role in Vietnam makes the raid last week of a Riverside County Hmong medical marijuana farm a stinging indictment of the never ending American war machine both on foreign and domestic soil.


riverside_co_sheriff.jpgThe Riverside raid will be the focus of the Wed. Aug. 6 MAPP meeting at our new meeting location with Hmong family farmers in attendance to tell their story of their flight from Vietnam, their precarious existence as refugees and the resurrection of their lives in the United States and Riverside County.


Hmong_people.jpgIn the beginning of the 19th Century the Hmong people moved from China to areas that became Laos, North Vietnam and Thailand. Settling in the mountainous areas of these countries, the Hmong continued their agrarian culture as farmers producing a variety of crops including cannabis which was used for rope, clothing and other textiles.


hmong_village_hillside.jpgThe Hmong became embroiled in the CIA’s secret war in Laos as their farms and villages in Northern Laos and North Vietnam were seen as critical by the U.S. military for providing safe passage into North Vietnam to fight the Viet Cong.


The Long Cheng airbase in Laos became the focal point of the U.S. effort to defeat the Communist Pathet Lao and North Vietnamese in Laos. So critical to the American war effort was the help of the Hmong that William Colby, Director of the CIA during the Reagan administration, credited the Hmong with saving the lives of thousands of U.S. soldiers as they blocked the North Vietnamese from their efforts to extend the Ho Chi Minh Trail into Laos for several years.


Hmong_soldiers.jpgTo fight the Communist Pathet Lao and Communist North Vietnamese, the CIA provided the Hmong with guns, money and training.


hmong_opium.jpgDuring this time the American military began to crack down on the use of marijuana by troops in Vietnam which resulted in an increase use of heroin by civilians and soldiers. Opium had become the primary cash crop of the Hmong, so to help them the CIA provided the Hmong with American UH-1 helicopters to transport the opium from their mountainous farms to distribution centers in Laos and South Vietnam.


30,000-40,000 Hmong died fighting on behalf of the Americans in Northern Laos. The last American plane and the last U.S. military personnel left Laos in June 1974. In their place, over 40,000 North Vietnamese troops arrived to assist the Communist Pathet Lao in the control Laos.


hmong_refugee.jpgAlthough a limited number of high ranking Hmong were evacuated by the United States and many fled to Thailand, thousands were left behind where the Pathet Lao publicly declared in May 1975 their intent to “wipe out” the Hmong people.


Beginning in 1976, many Hmong people began their flight from Thailand’s refugee camps to the U.S., France, Australia, French Guyana, and Canada. In 1979 over 10,000 Hmong were resettled in the United States with numbers increasing every year to a peak of 27,000 in 1980. The numbers decreased to under 5,000 per year through the mid-1980s but began increasing again in 1987 exceeding 10,000 in 1988 and leveling out to about 5,000 per year through 1994.


hmong_airport.jpgToday over 270,000 Hmong reside in the U.S. with over 90,000 residing in California, 66,000 in Minnesota, 50,000 in Wisconsin and significantly smaller populations in North Carolina, Michigan, Colorado, Georgia, Alaska, Oklahoma and Oregon.


hmong_citizen.jpgMany Hmong, especially their children born in the U.S. have become U.S. citizens and have assimilated into American culture. However many Hmong maintain their traditional livelihood as farmers as well as their cultural practices. About 2/3 of Hmong in the U.S. continue to practice the traditional animist Hmong religion and shamanism with the remaining 1/3 adopting Christian and other systems of belief and non-belief.


In California some Hmong families have, along with their vegetable farms began producing medicinal marijuana. However although the American government was willing to assist them in the production of opium for their support of the American war in the Vietnam, it now seems the government will arrest them for their production of medicinal marijuana in California.


Hmong farms have been raided in Trinity, Siskiyou and Lassen Counties and last week a Hmong Farm was raided in Riverside County by the Riverside County Sheriff’s office Special Investigations Unit.


after_1_plants.jpgbefore_plants.jpgThe farm held the recommendations for over 1,500 patients and was growing one hundred plants in each of two greenhouses and one hundred plants in an outdoor grow.


The Riverside raid in particular as well as the raids in other countries will be addressed at the Wednesday, August 6 MAPP meeting by Mai Vue, a Hmong medical cannabis activist whose parents operated the farm in Riverside that was raided.


Mai’s parents are expected to attend the meeting as well as their attorney Stefan Borst-Censullo who will discuss the legal issues they are facing.


Due to the excessive heat expected in August and the lack of air-conditioning in the meeting room of THCF Patient Center, the Wednesday August 6 MAPP meeting will be held at a new location in San Bernardino at 1180 W. Highland Blvd., San Bernardino CA 92405.


cannabis_friendly_locale.jpgThis is a cannabis friendly location with smoking permitted in the back patio area and vaporizing permitted indoors. This place is so cannabis friendly that although the meeting will begin at 7:30 p.m. as usual there will be pre-meeting socialization at 7 p.m. and immediately following the meeting at 9 p.m. Medical marijuana will not be available for sale, so along with your mmj recommendation, please BYOC (Bring Your Own Cannabis) for your enjoyment and the enjoyment of others.


chair_folding.jpgRefreshments will be provided. The only problem is that there is not enough chairs to accommodate everyone expected to attend, so if you are coming and have some chairs you can bring with you, that would be much appreciated. Please send an email to and let me know the number of chairs you will be bringing.


There will be more information about the Hmong, the raids on their farms and this very special meeting in the next newsletter sent out on Sunday, July 31, but if you have any questions or need more information, please contact me by sending an email to or calling me at 760-799-2055.


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The New Marijuana Schism Between Democrats & Republicans




The Ganja Divide


Along with climate change, income inequality, campaign finance reform, gun control, immigration and reproductive rights, marijuana has become another issue that dramatically separates the Democratic Party from the Republican Party.


dnc_convention.jpgrnc_convention.jpgAs the parties prepare for their anointing national conventions, they have busily been hammering out their respective platforms. Marijuana has always been absent from these platforms but with 25 states allowing medical marijuana and four states allowing legal marijuana plus at least four states with legalization initiatives on the 2016 ballots, even for the risk adverse, marijuana is an issue that can no longer be ignored.


As a consequence there has been battle royals over including marijuana in both party platforms and whereas the Democrats went for it full tilt boogie, the Republicans decided that discretion is the better part of valor.


sanders_supporters.jpgWith 12 state Democratic Parties calling for marijuana law reform and five determined Bernie Sander’s representatives on the 15-member Platform Drafting Committee, it was all but certain that the party would for the first time ever address the marijuana issue in the party’s national platform. The question was how forthright would the platform plank be?


Over the objections of the Sander’s delegate members who wanted a full-throated legalization plank, what came out of the Platform Drafting Committee was quasi-milk toast, but it was still pretty direct in its support for ending prohibition.


“We believe that the states should be laboratories of democracy on the issue of marijuana, and those states that want to decriminalize marijuana should be able to do so. We support policies that will allow more research to be done on marijuana, as well as reforming our laws to allow legal marijuana businesses to exist without certainty. And we recognize our current marijuana laws have had an unacceptable disparate impact, with arrest rates for marijuana possession among African-Americans far outstripping arrest rates among white despite similar usage rates.”


Supporting decriminalization, additional research and especially the part about allowing legal businesses to exist was a pretty far reaching step for a very first time marijuana plank in the Party’s Platform, but the times they are changing. The Sander’s delegates wouldn’t take milk toast as an answer and planned an end run when the draft platform came before the entire 187 member Platform Committee on Saturday, July 9.


david_king.jpgWhen the marijuana plank came up for discussion before the full committee, the Sander’s delegates introduced an amendment that would have removed marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act. David King, a lawyer and Sanders delegate from Tennessee, argued that marijuana was added to the act — giving the drug the same legal classification as heroin — during a "craze" to hurt "hippies and blacks."


With some committee members arguing the amendment went too far and could undermine efforts by states to decriminalize marijuana, a compromise was offered that did not call for the removal of marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act but rather called for the removal of marijuana from Schedule 1 and then went on with a call for “a reasoned pathway for future legalization.”


Rescheduling marijuana out of schedule 1 into another schedule is not the answer especially if it is put in schedule 2 but the word “legalization” was now in the plank and that seemed to satisfy enough Platform Committee members that it passed 81-80.


mark_pryor_2.jpgNo surprise that a victory that narrow resulted in a fight breaking out whether the voting was done properly but it all came to a civil conclusion when former Arkansas U.S. Senator Mark Pryor, a high-powered Clinton delegate declared “we withdraw the objection.” Although the opponents of the new plank were not thrilled that the earlier plank had been replaced, they obviously felt it was not worth the effort and expenditure of political capital to try and restore it.


The marijuana amendment adopted by the platform committee is much shorter and more direct and now reads:


"Because of conflicting laws concerning marijuana, both on the federal and state levels, we encourage the federal government to remove marijuana from its list as a Class 1 Federal Controlled Substance, providing a reasoned pathway for future legalization."


dem_mj_2016.jpgObviously the Democrats see having a marijuana plank as something that will bring them far more votes than they would lose so they are not in the least bit concerned about having a pro-marijuana plank in the National Platform. Further the amended plank might be seen as a bone that will satisfy some Bernie Sander’s delegates making them more willing to compromise on what many Clinton Democrats see as far more substantive issues that have polarized the party such as the Trans Pacific Partnership and busting up the “too-big-too-fail” banks..


The Democratic Party for the first time ever now has a plank in the party platform actually using the word “legalization,” so where do the Republicans stand on this issue?


The answer, unfortunately, is that they don’t stand anywhere – they have avoided it like a mouse avoids a cat. They are so totally flummoxed by the issue that even medical marijuana is still taboo.


eric_brakey.jpgAt the GOP Platform Committee meeting on July 11, a platform plank supporting medical marijuana was introduced by Eric Brakey, a legislator and delegate from Maine. So saddled with Cheech and Chong mythology the introduced platform plank only dealt with non-smokeable medical marijuana.


repub_mj_platform.pngConsidering that polls show up to 80% of Americans support allowing a doctor to recommend marijuana to their patients, it would seem almost a no-brainer to support the plank, but brains seems to be in short supply. From claiming smoking marijuana causes mental illness to connecting marijuana use with the heroin epidemic, every negative marijuana stereotype abounded. It was reefer madness on steroids with one delegate claiming that young boys from divorced families become mass murderers because they smoke pot.


Proponents of the plank stated that opponents misunderstood the scope of the proposal and pointed out that marijuana significantly improved the lives of patients with a variety of debilitating conditions and helps children whose conditions cannot be controlled with any other medication.


Alas their reasoned arguments were not to carry the day. The first voice vote was declared to close to call, but a second vote sealed its doom.


At least the Republican Platform doesn’t take a position opposing legalization. I guess the Republicans are willing to tolerate marijuana as long it’s kept in the closet.


From immigration to climate change, there will be lots of cards being played. Marijuana is a new card, but just how willing and to what extent the Democrats are willing to put it into play remains to be seen.


800_lb_gorilla.jpgswep_under_rug_2.jpgWhether the marijuana card is played and/or whether there is a marijuana plank in either party’s platform, cannabis now has a seat at the table. It may not be the 800 pound gorilla in the room, but it can no longer be swept under the rug.


We don't need a lot to do what we do
but 14¢ a day can sure help


BTR_MCCS_Logo.jpgWhat is happening to marijuana in the House and Senate in our nation's capitol is explained by Paul Armentano in the newest episode of Marijuana Compassion & Common Sense. Hear it right now just CLICK HERE.

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