Recently in Drugs Category
"Proposition 62, which would end the death penalty in CA and replace it with life in prison, trails by 15 points today and is headed for defeat." If that sounds familiar, it's nearly identical to what the same poll found about two weeks ago, noted in this post.
"Proposition 63, which outlaws large-capacity magazines and requires background checks on ammo purchases, leads by more than 2:1 and will pass."
"Proposition 64, which would legalize, regulate and tax recreational marijuana, is supported 52% to 41%. Caution advised."
And Proposition 66, which would streamline the death penalty and allow us to restart executions? They didn't poll on it. Again.
The pollsters note:
Polling ballot measures and citizen initiatives is an inexact science. In general, having nothing to do with California specifically and having nothing to do with 2016 uniquely, opposition to a ballot measure increases as Election Day approaches. Rarely does support for a ballot measure increase over time. It is likely that opposition to Propositions 56, 62, 63 and 64 will increase once early voting begins on 10/10/16. This may alter the calculus on recreational marijuana Proposition 64, which today has the most fragile advantage of those measures tested.
In the previous post, I noted my rare agreement with Jerry Brown that a marijuana industry with legitimacy and mass marketing would produce an increase in consumption that will diminish us as a nation. This is why. We are already suffering from a decline in the ambition and work ethic that made us a great nation in the first place. The last thing we need is a chemically induced steepening of our decline.
The problem with anything, a certain amount is OK. But there is a tendency to go to extremes. And all of a sudden, if there's advertising and legitimacy, how many people can get stoned and still have a great state or a great nation?
Many who argue against the legalization of marijuana suggest that while its consumption may not be very harmful, marijuana indirectly causes significant social harm by acting as a "gateway drug," a drug whose consumption facilitates the use of other, more harmful, drugs. This article presents a theory of "gateway crimes", which, perhaps counterintuitively, implies that there are social gains to decriminalizing offenses that cause minor harms, including marijuana-related offenses.
A typical gateway crime is an act which is punished lightly, but, because it is designated as a crime, being convicted for committing it leads one to be severely stigmatized.
I stopped reading there, because, having been around for a few decades, I understand (as does every other more-or-less rational person) that the notion that being convicted of smoking a joint "leads one to be severely stigmatized" is preposterous. Pot smoking, whether or not one got caught at it, was very widely accepted in my Baby Boomer generation, and is even more widely accepted now. You're more likely to be stigmatized (as a Puritanical nerd) if, by the time you're 25, you haven't smoked a joint.
The stuff that gets put for as "scholarship" in legal academia continues to amaze.
The Obama administration has decided marijuana will remain on the list of most-dangerous drugs, fully rebuffing growing support across the country for broad legalization, but said it will allow more research into its medical uses.
The decision to expand research into marijuana's medical potential could pave the way for the drug to be moved to a lesser category. Heroin, peyote and marijuana, among others, are considered Schedule I drugs because they have no medical application; cocaine and opiates, for example, have medical uses and, while still illegal for recreational use, are designated Schedule II drugs.
The Drug Enforcement Administration said the agency's decision came after a lengthy review and consultation with the Health and Human Services Department, which said marijuana "has a high potential for abuse" and "no accepted medical use." The decision means that pot will remain illegal for any purpose under federal law, despite laws in 25 states and District of Columbia that have legalized pot for either medicinal or recreational use.
President Barack Obama commuted the sentences of 214 federal prisoners yesterday, part of his ongoing crusade against a criminal-justice system he regularly declares racist and draconian. The White House trumpeted the fact that this was the largest one-day grant of clemency since 1900....
Many of the commuttees possessed stolen firearms or firearms with their serial numbers obliterated. Some were in violation of National Firearms Registration, which can mean possession of a federally prohibited weapon, such as a machine gun, silencer, or sawed-off shotgun. We don't know how many guns the offenders actually had; a commuttee during a previous batch of commutations had 40.Nor does the Justice Department's press release disclose the actual incidence of firearm possession by these federal convicts. Gun possession can be used to increase a federal sentence under the federal sentencing guidelines without a prosecutor's actually bringing a formal charge. A gun charge can also be plea-bargained away. Many advocates of criminal-justice reform believe in maximum gun control, yet White House press releases on the president's commutations have been silent on the widespread incidence of illegal gun possession.
Taylor v. United States, No. 14-6166, deals with one of the broadest laws for extending federal criminal jurisdiction to seemingly local cases, the Hobbs Act. Any robbery affecting interstate commerce is within federal jurisdiction, and given the post-1937 definition of interstate commerce, that is a very broad sweep. In today's case, any robbery of drug dealers can be a federal offense.
RJR Nabisco v. European Community, No. 15-138, involves civil suits under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. The Court puts some limits on this much-misused procedure, blocking civil RICO suits where the acts are all outside the United States.
During the [Libertarian Party Convention] presidential candidate debate, the room went wild for suggestions of abolishing the Federal Reserve, state-sponsored education, and gun control.
"I believe in a world where gay married couples can defend their marijuana fields with submachine guns, aw yeah baby!" conservative libertarian Austin Petersen said.
"Crystal meth should be as legal as tomatoes," another candidate Daryl Perry declared.
I'm all for the right to defend your person and your home with force, including, in cases of imminent danger of grave bodily harm, guns. But using an AK-47 to defend your pot grow, is, well......
What else is there to say here, except that those in search of a third party should check out whether those things in their sandwiches are really tomatoes.
A man in a Hamilton County courtroom finally gave in and pulled out two bags of pot from his underwear- a move that landed him an extra day of jail.
Hamilton County Municipal Court Judge Bernie Bouchard stopped court on Wednesday after an overwhelming smell of marijuana allegedly took over the courtroom.
Bouchard gave everyone a chance to claim responsibility for the marijuana before he ordered deputies to bring drug dogs in the courtroom.
The defendant, Darius Dabney, raised his hand and admitted to smoking marijuana before entering the courthouse.
The ensuing exchange between the judge, the defendant and his lawyer is a hoot. You can read it in the link
Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument in three "drunk driver" cases. The defendants in those cases challenged the criminal penalty that attaches when an arrested suspected drunk driver refuses to take a chemical test to determine the driver's blood alcohol level. CJLF filed an amicus brief in one of the cases (Beylund v. Levi) in support of the implied consent and criminal refusal laws.The amount of alcohol in a person's blood is scientifically easy to determine. Most people agree that drunk people should not operate a motor vehicle. But what about stoned drivers? Driving under the influence of "any drug" is a crime in California (Vehicle Code 23152(e)). But, there is no established legal limit for marijuana like there is for alcohol.
Data from 2015 indicate that 30 percent of current cannabis users harbor a use disorder -- more Americans are dependent on cannabis than on any other illicit drug. Yet marijuana advocates have relentlessly pressured the federal government to shift marijuana from Schedule I -- the most restrictive category of drug -- to another schedule or to de-schedule it completely. Their rationale? "States have already approved medical marijuana"; "rescheduling will open the floodgates for research"; and "many people claim that marijuana alone alleviates their symptoms."
Yet unlike drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration, "dispensary marijuana" has no quality control, no standardized composition or dosage for specific medical conditions. It has no prescribing information or no high-quality studies of effectiveness or long-term safety. While the FDA is not averse to approving cannabinoids as medicines and has approved two cannabinoid medications, the decision to keep marijuana in Schedule I was reaffirmed in a 2015 federal court ruling. That ruling was correct.