Willie Nelson’s Teapot Party Endorses…uh…whut? Oh, Nevermind

(Willie Nelson finds Nirvana)

 

Willie Nelson’s Teapot Party was formed last November after the singer was arrested for pot possession. The goal of the party is support candidates who think the way the Teappotters to do. Which pretty much means legalizing marijuana.

Just three days ago Willie Nelson endorsed former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson as the GOP nominee; Johnson admits to smoking pot and is pro-legalization. Heck Johnson even attended a bunch of pro- hemp and pot rallies across the country! Non of this “I never inhaled,” namby-pambyism from him.


But then–after Willie endorsed and Johnson sent out an acceptance quote and it was all over the media, Willie changed his mind. Instead, he told campaign advisers, he likes Dennis Kucinich for president.

Nelson now says

I think I will wait and see where he [Johnson] stands on other things. My bad. Sorry. I still think he is a good guy but so is Dennis and if he decided to run I would personally vote for him. If it came down to either him or Gary I’m already committed to Dennis. They both have said they support legal pot…This will blow over and the world moves on. No harm done. We sound like a bunch of pot smokers, that’s all…The more I get into politics the more I realize that I am a guitar player.

The presidential election is more than just a one-issue race. And while the Teapot Party might want to take a page from corporations by backing a candidate form each party, in the end endorsing a candidate is a serious business which requires more than just a a bong’s worth of thought.

 

[HT: Celeb Stoner]

Weed and Unions: Good for America!

Connecticut is showing tremendous support for medical marijuana and decriminalization.  And why not? Pot is good for the American economy and for the American worker!

Late Night: Obama Says-Drugs Aren’t a Health Issue, They’re a Legal Matter

While President Obama told Law Enforcement Against Prohibition member MacKenzie Allen, a retired deputy sheriff during an interview with the organization:

We have to think more about drugs as a public health problem

his comments on the new federal drug new budget show things in a different light.

But Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has a different view towards Ecstasy. They printed up a flier for distribution at raves which gave

tips such as “aim low” in both dose and frequency of the hallucinogen and to take regular breaks to let the body rest…

And ignored the legality. The fliers state that effects of Ecstasy

may include elevated mood and energy, enhanced sensations and a sense of emotional connectedness,” but also warn that it can lead to depression, anxiety and irritability.

It also says repeated Ecstasy use should be avoided. It’s a pretty wimpy attempt to tell people

Hey this stuff is BAD for you and you could go to jail!

The fliers were developed by county health officials and paid for by rave promoters after over 100 people were hospitalized at a series of huge raves at publicly owned facilities such as the Coliseum and L.A. Sports Arena which are rented by the gianormous party promoters.

L.A. city and county officials did not ban the raves, even after a 15 year-old girl died of an Ecstasy overdose in July, and the flier is the result of a task force convened to study the matter.

County Supervisor Mike Antonovich raised a ruckus and Public Health officials said they would immediately  revise the card

to further and more emphatically state that illegal drug use is dangerous.

I hope they didn’t print up a forest worth of these useless fliers.

Pot isn’t Ecstasy, and yet LA County at least recognizes the health issues of drug use. Drug use is health issue–pot and be very helpful for people who are ill, while drug addiction is a public health issue which should be addressed with treatment and harm reduction, rather than imprisonment.

Happy Oct 22! LA Gets POTUS and Protests

It’s 10/22. Do you know where your POTUS is? Today in Los Angeles the 110, 101, 2, 5, and 134 freeways  will be affected impacted by Obama appearing at USC and then taking a cruise to Glendale to tape an interview with radio personality Piolin on a Spanish-language station. Question of the day–will the President try  Glendale’s local delicacy Zankou Chicken, made famous by its Faulkern-esque family murder-suicides and redolent garlic sauce?  The rain and mist might make it non-viable for Obama to take a helicopter like Cardinal Roger Mahony used back when he had a bishop-prick to attend to, so expect freeway and street closures.

There’s also a big rally downtown outside at Pershing Square with the October 22 Coalition marching as part of a National Day of Protest

to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation

which will have observers from the National Lawyers Guild present. In Los Angeles during a September marches expressing outrage at the shooting of Guatemalan day laborer Manuel Jamines (Jamines Xum) by the LAPD, four protesters were arrested–two of whom were turned over ICE–and three officers injured by rocks and bottles thrown by demonstrators.

Considering marijuana prohibition’s affect on

the criminalization of a generation,

and POTUS’ stance on pot, expect some pro-Prop 19 groups  at both events.

Celebs Bang a Gong for Prop 19

Thursday Prop 19 got endorsements from Danny Glover, Melissa Etheridge and Hal Sparks joined by LAPD Deputy Chief Steve Downing, former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson and activist Sarah Lovering at a news conference to show support for Prop 19 which would legalize marijuana possession for those over 21.

Currently marijuana use for 18 and older is decriminalized, and medical marijuana use is legal statewide.

If Prop 19 passes, the Feds have said they will crack down on pot in CA, making for an interesting series of legal challenges and states’ rights arguments.

Melissa Etheridge said that she had used pot to help nausea during her breast cancer chemo and says she favors legalization and while she uses marijuana medicinally she said

I don’t want to look like a criminal to my children anymore. I want them to know this is a choice that you make as a responsible adult.

CA Potheads: Vote! There’s More on the Ballot than Marijuana.

So now everyone who wishes to vote in California has registered, the legislative analyses have been mailed out and it’s time to get down to srs bsns.

Californians, it is really important to vote in this election. So fill out your mail-in ballot and leave it for the postperson if you think you can’t manage to get to the polls (gods know I am fairly langurous and prefer the simple stamp to actually leaving the house.)  There are some important races on the ballot, and if you don’t vote, you really need need to STFU about how things are being run.

Okay, along with the gubernatorial and senate races, there’s Prop 19 which should be enough to get you to the polls, ye slackers, stoners, and sybarites!  Politics make strange and sometimes hot bedfellows: There are non-smokers who are yes supporters;  wake’n'bakers who are no;  medical/215 clients and casual users who have divergent views yea vs nay; and people who are still trying to figure out what “space” with regards to a minor means–and if  passing out pot brownies at a party constitutes “personal use.”

Whether or not you are voting for legalizing pot because you are appalled at the way the war on drugs is being run and want the state to have some cash; or against it because of the patchwork of jurisdictional laws and  potential environment impact of acres of indoor growing  on non-renewable resources, figure out what works for you and go vote.

If Prop 19, which is ahead in the polls passes, United States Attorney General Eric Holder is gonna crack down in Cali. Hopefully medical won’t be impacted. I hear the cry across the land

Oh noes I’m a on list!

Prop 19 will feel the effect of whoever is elected as State Attorney General, a post now held by gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown.

Well,  Los Angeles District Attorney Steve Cooley who is running as the Republican candidate is really opposed to CA’s 215 medical marijuana business, and even more so to Prop 19. Earlier this month, he told an audience at a UC Davis debate:

I really am strongly opposed to Proposition 19 for many reasons. I would be inclined to advise that it is unconstitutional and pre-empted by federal law.
Cooley stood with LA County Sheriff Lee Baca–IMO a hypocrite who has co-signed the thuggish cult of Scientology for decades, riding on their parade  floats and speaking at their events, despite the cult’s  clear cut violations of human rights, child labor laws, and basic human decency–on Friday October 15 when Baca said Prop 19 was superseded by federal law and if passed, would be found unconstitutional.
Proposition 19 is not going to pass, even if it passes.
As Los Angeles County District Attorney, Cooley cracked down on dispensaries from the time of the passage of 215 on. He doesn’t like pot, he doesn’t like pot being sold. And goodness knows what he would do to 215, but maybe I am just being all Cassandra on the walls of Troy again. Like I was about Holder and the Feds.
Candidate Kamala Harris–former San Francisco District Attoney whose endorsements were plastered all over HempCon by both the for and against 19 pot advocates and, per UC Davis School of Law Dean Kevin Johnson
sees herself as an attorney general who will focus on issues not just involving crime and law enforcement, per se, but also issues of environmental justice, protecting consumers and more broad issues
–took a more cautious approach on Prop 19 at the UC Davis  debate.
I believe that if it were to pass, it would be incumbent on the attorney general to convene her top lawyers and the experts on constitutional law to do a full analysis of the constitutionality of that measure … and what action, if any, should follow.
Prop 19 comes down to states’ rights, as by the way, so does AZ Prop 1070. As with AZ 1070 expect Constitutional challenges. The Drug Enforcement Agency anticipates suing if Prop 19 passes.
What will be fascinating if Prop 19 passes–and it is eight points ahead in the polls, with the LA Weekly Dennis Romero pointing about that Holder’s remarks:
Way to piss off Californians so much that we might actually pass this thing…Kiss our Golden State ass.

–is that potentially Tea Party/states rights/militia types and libertarians could cuddle up with liberals, libertines and hippies to fight for an elected initiative that runs contrary to Federal policy. Sit back, order in pizza, and start the pop corn, it’s a smoking Constitutional cause and democracy’s finest hour. Dude.

Humboldt Grower’s Association Issues Outdoor Pot Guidelines

Untrimmed sun bud and other Humboldt bounties

I was up in Humboldt County again last week and met with county supervisor Mark Lovelace–who led opposition to an industrial logging plan and helped establish the Sunny Brae Community Forest–to talk about Prop 19. Humboldt County has led the way in environmental protection for the redwoods, in senior care and of course in cultivation of their renown outdoor sun-bud varietals and other strains of cannabis grown with less environmental care and concern.

As well explaining to me that the very nature of pot’s illegality serves as a protection for those who large scale grow on public lands in the parks and forests because of the lack of regulation, Lovelace told me that standards need to be set for commercial marijuana production, a statewide baseline

I know what my own standards would be (outdoor-organically grown only; indoor commercial grows like those in houses across the state and even larger ones proposed in Oakland are environmentally destructive, using non-renewable resources and causing irreparable damage) and now the Humboldt Growers Association in anticipation of legalization  are trying to develop a proposal for medical marijuana cultivation that I hope would become the guideline for commercial pot.

HGA board member Joey Burger told the Times-Standard that if the law changes, the board’s proposed ordinance would be easily convertible to a larger marijuana industry.

Of course with those standards comes regulation, permits and fees. Regulations fees and permits are inevitable if Prop 19 passes, but there’s no need to rape the environment for profit. Kinda runs contra to perceived ganja/weed/pot culture values, though it seems the newer generation of growers could give a flying hang. I was told by one official that the the growing kids today have a sense of entitlement bought by underground economy’s income and an overall lack of respect for the land.  What I saw in grow-jerks was the bro-tardness inherent in today’s callow youth, part of the Federlining of America, with more dollars than sense.

Outdoor-organic sun bud, mold resistant cultivar; pesticide free.

The proposed HGA ordinance would

regulate outdoor marijuana grows with canopy areas larger than 100 square feet through a permitting process that lays out requirements for both applicants and farms. According to the proposed ordinance, applicants would have to be at least 21 years old, a resident of the county for at least two years and not have any violent crime convictions on their record.

In order to get a permit under the proposed ordinance, applicants would have to submit to site inspections, estimate water usage and a water source for the garden and provide proof of land ownership. The permits would be up for renewal every year and would allow the cultivation of not more than 40,000 square feet of canopy space

.

The sum total of garden space could not exceed 40,000 square feet (an acre is 43,560 square feet). Permit holders would also be required to provide access to their cultivation sites and water resources to inspectors at all times. While a permit for a 1/4 acre would cost about $20,000, gardens under 100 square feet would not require a permit.

I am curious if the HGA’s proposed ordinance will allow 99 square feet per person per residence, as on farms there may be several people living communally, each growing their own 215 (medical) pot.

The HGA guidelines as reported in the Times-Standard do not go into regulating the organic aspect, and does not address current commercial indoor growing which hopefully can be dealt with through other means. The Humboldt Medical Marijuana Advisory Panel (HuMMAP) has also  presented its draft policy to the county supervisors — which includes graduated licensing fees for cultivation starting at $200 a year for 100 square feet of mature plant canopy, and allows for immediate outside interests to begin large scale growing, if they can afford the $300,000 for 40,00 square feet.

With regard to the HuMMAP proposal, Lovelace told the Times-Standard that the guidelines addressed the issue of growing statewide and reiterated what he had told me:

We’d all like to have some authority at the local level.  But I think we’d like to have a baseline which we can work with.

The County Supervisors who, by the very nature of the jobs seem determined to regulate, tax and control marijuana growing, will no about come up with a plan, hopefully a workable and affordable solution that will benefit farmers, the environment, consumers and California–and possibly by extension the country as more and more states open their minds to medical marijuana and eventual legalization.

Late Night: Altar-ed States, Pastors and Pot

While one Colorado clergyman is fighting his arrest for possession of pot (claiming his status as clergy in the Ministry of THC allows for sacramental reefer use), a pastor in California is up in arms over the NAACP’s support of the November ballot initiative to legalize recreational marijuana use.

Rev. Jason Wimler is claiming the cannabis found in his car by Colorado State Troopers late last year was for sacramental use for a ceremony he hoped to perform during the Christmas holiday. His attorney Daneyl Joffe was granted the right to file a brief on jury instructions specific to religious use of cannabis. Joffe’s point is that the Colorado Constitution allows for

the free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination

though some might argue that Wimler’s pot possession fall under this part of the law:

but the liberty of conscience hereby secured shall not be construed to dispense with oaths or affirmations, excuse acts of licentiousness or justify practices inconsistent with the good order, peace or safety of the state. (emphasis mine)

Meanwhile the NAACP in California has come out in support of the legalization of marijuana because as  Alice Huffman, the state NAACP president, says:

There is a strong racial component that must be considered when we investigate how marijuana laws are applied to people of color. The burden has fallen disproportionately on people of color and young black men in particular.

Sacramento minister Ron Allen–bishop of the Greater Solomon Temple Community Church in Oak Park and  president of the International Faith-Based Coalition, a Sacramento group representing 3,600 congregations–is not too happy about this:

Most African American pastors are disappointed, absolutely disappointed with the decision. If anyone should know the effects of illicit drugs in the black community, it should be one of our most respected civil rights organizations.

Yes, Bishop Allen, but if pot were legal, then it wouldn’t be illicit, no would it? Maybe Bishop Allen should check out the ministry of THC, which claims both Jesus and Moses used cannabis oil as for holy anointing. Hallelujah!


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