Category Archives: Analysis

[Analysis] Hit it or get off the Pot, or, Putting the P in Pot

Who says basic research is dead?

NIH is funding a three year study in Washington state to measure the amount of metabolized cannabinoids in the sewer system. This shitty job will be done by the University of Puget Sound, because who else would do it?

Consumers of cannabis defecate some of the psychoactive ingredients in the plant. Everyone knows this. The drug testing industry made oodles once it was discovered that you could ruin someone’s life over the content of their pee. The university research team will be mucking around in the sewers, trying to determine the habits of the people crapping above them.

The researcher’s description of the goals:

“We’re trying to get a sense of the type of user,” Burgard said.

Well, there’s the type that smokes weed, and the type that smokes weed a lot. Perhaps that narrows it down. NIH, care to throw me some cash?

“If there’s more use on the weekends, maybe that’s more recreational. But if Sunday to Thursday use goes up as much, that might be a public health concern, with habitual users using a lot more.”

Clearly I’m a threat to public health by having Ice Bong Sundaes.

Just a suggestion, but I’m wondering whether it would be easier to poll people for answers. It’s legal in the state, after all, so response rate would be decent. Pot users are people that can speak, last time I checked!

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[Non-Fiction] Child’s questioning of cannabis lesson turns into search warrant and arrest for parent

As activist Diane Fornbacher has pointed out, the War on Drugs is a war on families.

April 17

From the website run by investigative journalist Ben Swann:

On March 24, cannabis oil activist Shona Banda‘s life was flipped upside-down after her son was taken from her by the State of Kansas. The ordeal started when police and counselors at her 11-year-old son’s school conducted a drug education class. Her son, who had previously lived in Colorado for a period of time, disagreed with some of the anti-pot points that were being made by school officials. “My son says different things like my ‘Mom calls it cannabis and not marijuana.’ He let them know how educated he was on the facts,” said Banda in an exclusive interview with Banda successfully treated her own Crohn’s disease with cannabis oil.

After her son spoke out about medical marijuana, police detained him and launched a raid on Shona Banda’s home. “Well, they had that drug education class at school that was just conducted by the counselors… They pulled my son out of school at about 1:40 in the afternoon and interrogated him. Police showed up at my house at 3… I let them know that they weren’t allowed in my home without a warrant… I didn’t believe you could get a warrant off of something a child says in school.” Banda continued, “We waited from 3 o’clock until 6 o’clock. They got a warrant at 6 o’clock at night and executed a warrant into my home. My husband and I are separated, and neither parent was contacted by authorities before [our son] was taken and questioned.”

I can’t imagine the psychic distress the child feels right now. At 11 you’re riding bikes and destroying public property, not navigating the legal system because you voiced your opinion about your mom’s self-treatment.

Hopefully a real lesson was learned by all the children in the class: schools will sell you out if you do not toe the line. Analysis is only welcome if it fits into the right line of thought. If not, draconian measures are taken.

The authorities will use our families against us. They will divide and conquer, search and destroy.

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[Non-Fiction] Jamaica leading cannabis charge against international treaties binding US and others

I think their confidence is fantastic:

“Jamaica intends to participate, and to lead, if necessary, a process in the United Nations to have those treaties amended or to reflect what I believe is the evidence that is available, and take those fully into account in the international treaties as they now exist,” he said.

The industry minister noted that Jamaica has a reputation in the international community as a legal nation and has the requisite skills and know-how to lead a diplomatic effort to have the laws and treaties changed.

Even having one, small nation committed to leading the charge against international regulations about cannabis is promising.

The Controlled Substances act in the United States specifically refers to a set of international treaties. At the moment, in language and in spirit, those treaties match the position of the US federal government with regard to cannabis.One frequently sees international treaties used as a scapegoat against changing federal law.

While I think the Jamaican development is great, my home country, the USA, ignores its treaty obligations on a fairly regular basis. It also is not party to treaties that span the globe.

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[Non-Fiction] College smoker stereotype busted… but who ever believed in it?

The Wonkblog post is absolutely ridiculous.

When the drug exploded onto the American scene in the 1970s, the first adopters were drawn heavily from the college-educated middle class. But in more recent years, the marijuana market has become more economically downscale .

The claim is simply unsupported. The graph they post says the opposite: college-graduate use is increasing, not decreasing. Check out the graph of the last decade or so on their blog post.

As most know, the incarceration factor of marijuana falls on the lower classes primarily. So why did this myth start?

Why then is the modal cultural image of pot that of hipster professionals clucking over arrays of $500/ounce sinsemilla blends at upscale dispensaries in San Francisco or Boulder, rather than, say, that of a gas station attendant who smokes low-cost weed several times a day?

The answer may be that journalists, pundits, elected officials and policy analysts, like all human beings, have a tendency to overestimate the representativeness of their own experience. The college-educated chattering classes portray and discuss the world they know, which in fact is a small slice of the U.S. marijuana scene.

The Washington Post isn’t going to say it, so I will:

This is a great example of how divorced the political class is from the rest of the population.

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[Non-Fiction] Homeland Security and “traffic stop extremism”

The Department of Homeland Security released a report on right wing extremism in the United States, by American citizens.

In this short post, I’ll talk about why I believe DHS’ report seems shortsighted, and why concerns about civil liberties during routine police encounters are warranted.

CNN has a breakdown here. The TLDR version:

Some federal and local law enforcement groups view the domestic terror threat from sovereign citizen groups as equal to — and in some cases greater than — the threat from foreign Islamic terror groups, such as ISIS, that garner more public attention.​..

The government says these are extremists who believe that they can ignore laws and that their individual rights are under attack in routine daily instances such as a traffic stop or being required to obey a court order.

Keyboard warriors were out and about. The headline was spun as: Continue reading

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[Non-fiction] “Not minding that it hurts”: Marijuana as a “pain distracter”

With Lawrence in Arabia.jpg

“With Lawrence in Arabia” by Lowell Thomas (photographer) – Lowell Thomas. “With Lawrence in Arabia”, book is in public-domain, full text available at; originally from University of Toronto. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons –

Where do THC and Lawrence of Arabia meet? You’ll find out in a minute. This post is going to outline the pain distraction effects of the marijuana plant’s active compounds, specifically THC.

First, a little background on the state of medical marijuana and the current zeitgeist around CBDs.

Charlotte’s Web, a homegrown variety of marijuana documented in Sanjay Gupta’s CNN series, is a CBD-heavy strain that has found successful medical application for people suffering seizures. You could argue that Charlotte’s Web is now just as ingrained in the national consciousness as Maui Wauie. CBD, or Cannabidiol, is famous for its anti inflammatory effects and relatively low psychotropic impact. Strains heavy in CBDs, like Charlotte’s Web, are the go-to variety for treating children. It’s seen as unacceptable that children should experience any psychotropic effects from the drugs they consume. I’m not going to belabor that point here, even though it’s a little ridiculous considering some of the garbage shoved down kids throats, like sugar and caffeine. Continue reading

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In the midst of a writing vortex!

I’m currently working on a few things at once. It’s making my head spin, but I’m glad I’m in a prolific state of mind!

  1. Part 3 of the High Water Series: for those familiar with my kung fu zombie horror series, the third book is well on the way to a final version. Artwork is still to come, and the editing is going, albeit very slowly. This one is a monster that I have to slay!
  2. Short stories: My other major project is a short story collection, which is about a third of the way done. The central novella is in editing review, and two other stories are in production. I’ll likely round out the collection with another short story or two. It will premiere right here on Pot Fiction, so grab your lighters and prepare to spark!
  3. Regulatory analysis: A long term goal of mine at the moment is writing up a regulatory analysis of legal marijuana laws. NORML did all the hard work of spelling out where and when you can smoke. I’m actually more interested in the spirit of the laws, though I’m no Montesquieu! I have no clue when I’ll get around to this.
  4. My next novel: The next one will deal with someone trying to solve two problems at once. One problem involves a lot of explosive action, my writing strength. The other problem deals with a weighty scientific issue, not exactly my strength. It’s the latter that is going to take time to parse out through research. But I’ve started it with a burst of writing, which is cool.

Where I am at the moment, though titles are the least of my problems!


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