ON THE SPEAKEASY BLOG

Myths, Moralism, and Hypocrisy Drive the International Drug Control System

Our international drug policies reflect a bias towards the global north, with damaging consequences for the south. 13 comments

Will UNGASS 2016 Be the Beginning of the End for the War on Drugs?

Held this April, will the United Nations General Assembly Special Session be the turning point for the international drug control system? 9 comments

David Borden -- Remarks at the United Nations, February 10, 2016

Last week the UN held an NGO meeting in New York, as part of a series events leading up to this April's major drug session. 12 comments

BREAKING: Another Senate Pro-Medical Marijuana Vote

The Senate Appropriations Committee just voted to extend the ban on DOJ spending funds to interfere with state medical marijuana laws. 12 comments

New York Medical Marijuana Program Brings in $3 Million from Application Process

New York has closed it application process for those wishing to get one of the state's 5 permits to open a medical cannabis dispensary. Each permit would entitle the holder to open four dipsnsaries. In total, 20 dispensaries would be opened in a state with a population of over 19 million people. 4 comments

URGENT: Congressional Vote on Permitting State Marijuana Laws!

Last year's legislation protecting state medical marijuana laws from federal interference is expiring soon. A vote coming as soon as tonight could extend it, while expanding it to include state legalization laws too. 7 comments

CT Lawmakers Push to Add Children and Hospital Patients to Medical Marijuana Program

Both houses of the Conneticut legislature are preparing their final votes on a bill that would add children and hospital patients to the state's medical marijuana program. The bill would restrict children from smoking or vaping their medical marijuana. 8 comments

Three Marijuana Reform Bills Filed in Louisiana

Three seperate marijuana reform bills have been filed in the Louisiana State Capitol. They include a restrictive medical marijuana bill supported by law enforcement, and two seperate efforts to reform the state's harsh sentencing laws. 9 comments

Write and Call Congress TODAY for Vets' Access to Medical Marijuana!

An important amendment is coming up for a vote in the House of Representatives late this afternoon or early evening. Our two web forms will help you to both email and call your member of Congress to support it. 10 comments

What Does Congress's Medical Marijuana Legislation Actually Mean?

The controversial "CRomnibus" bill passed by the House and Senate includes language barring the Dept. of Justice from using taxpayer funds to interfere with state medical marijuana laws. 10 comments

Washington Sheriff Tells Oregon Voters: Legalization Is Already Working

King County Sheriff John Urquhart has recorded a message letting Oregon voters know that legalization in Washington State has seen wasteful arrests decrease, DUIs decrease, taxes going to schools and police, and drug prevention programs getting funding. 14 comments

DC Marijuana Initiative Qualifies for Ballot

More info later today, see @DCMJ2014 in the meanwhile...

3 comments

Summer Reading Assignment for Congress

Dean Becker of the Drug Truth Network is in Washington today to give copies of his book, "To End the War on Drugs," to every member of the House and Senate. 3 comments

House Votes to Let Banks Take Deposits from Marijuana Businesses

In a historic vote this afternoon, the US House has approved an amendment to the Treasury Department appropriations bill barring the agency from spending any money to punish financial institutions that provide services to marijuana businesses where it is legal. 3 comments

One of the Worst Ideas to Come Out of the War on Drugs: Sentencing Enhancement Zones

A video from the Prison Policy Initiative on what is indeed one of the worst ideas to come out of the war on drugs. 10 comments

House Committee Votes to Block DC Decrim

The GOP-dominated House Appropriations Committee stuck a thumb in the eye of democratic governance in the nations capital this morning. The committee voted to prevent the District of Columbia from implementing marijuana decriminalization approved by the District government. 6 comments

Senate Could Vote to Cut DEA Funds as Soon as Tonight

In a historic vote late last month, the House moved to cut funding for the DEA to go after medical marijuana in states where it is legal. Now, the Senate is preparing to vote on a similar measure. 17 comments

DEA Leaning On Massachusetts Docs with Dispensaries Ties

The Boston Globe is reporting today that the DEA has been visiting Massachusetts doctors involved with yet-to-open medical marijuana dispensaries and giving them an ultimatum: Cut your ties with the dispensary or lose your DEA-issued license to prescribe drugs. And it's working. 12 comments

There Were Several Drug Policy Amendments to the CJS Bill

Reformers have mostly been talking about the 13 comments

House Passes Historic Medical Marijuana Amendment

Late Thursday night, the House of Representatives told the DEA to butt out of medical marijuana states by approving a budget amendment barring the use of taxpayer funds to do so. 12 comments

Kentucky Gets its Hemp Seed as DEA Backs Off

It's a done deal. A UPS truck delivered more than 250 pounds of hemp seed to the Kentucky Department of Agriculture this afternoon. It took a lawsuit and a lot of political pressure on DEA head Michele Leonhart, but the agency has backed away from its initial refusal to allow the seeds to be imported. 5 comments

The Largest Marijuana March Ever? 150,000 Protest in Buenos Aires!

Good Golly, Miss Mary Jane! I've been watching marijuana legalization marches for a long time and I've never seen a crowd like this. 13 comments

Uruguay's Mujica is the Grumpy Old Man of Global Marijuana Legalization

Uruguay formally rolls out its marijuana legalization rules next week, but President Mujica shows he's no Captain Cannabis. 7 comments

Big News from the Administration About Commutations

The Obama administration may issue hundreds or even thousands of sentence commutations in drug cases, 4 comments

It's 4/20 in Denver!

Denver is pot city this weekend, with the High Times Cannabis Cup, the 4/20 rally downtown, and dozens of related musical and cultural events. 3 comments

I'm Denver Bound, So No Chronicle AM for Friday

I'm driving from eastern South Dakota to Denver Friday in preparation for the 4/20 weekend there. 1 comment

Maryland Becomes 18th Decrim State, 21st Medical Marijuana State

With Gov. Martin O'Malley's signature today on two bills passed by the legislature, Maryland decriminalized marijuana possession and becomes a full-fledged medical marijuana state. 4 comments

Medical Marijuana Expansion, Decriminalization Pass in Maryland

It was a banner day in Annapolis Monday, where legislators, working against an end-of-session deadline, managed to pass both marijuan decriminalization and medical marijuana expansion bills. 5 comments

Obama Needs to Slap Down His Rogue DEA Chief

DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart told a congressional committee today her agency is "fighting back" against Justice Department policies tolerating marijuana in states where it is legal. The president needs to remind her who is the boss. 15 comments

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FROM THE CHRONICLE

Chronicle AM: Pot Initiative Polls in AR, CA, ME; Marijuana Arrests at 20-Year Low, More.. (9/26/16)

Polls show thing looking good for pot legalization efforts in California and Maine, not so good for medical marijuana initiatives in Arkansas; pot possession arrests hit a 20-year-low, and more. comments

Donald Trump's Bizarre Explanation for Charlotte Unrest: "Drugs"

What's behind the unrest in Charlotte? Donald Trump has a unique answer. 4 comments

Chronicle AM: DEA Issues Carfentanil Warning, Malaysia to Hang Man for MJ Trafficking, More... (9/23/16)

The DEA issues a warning on a powerful emerging opioid, Michigan marijuana legalizers turn their eyes to 2018, Malaysia sentences a man to death for pot dealing, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: Good MJ Polls in CA/NV, Lynch Rejects Gateway Theory, MI MedMJ, More... (9/22/16)

New polls show legalization initiatives leading in California and Nevada, Michigan will soon see medical marijuana dispensaries, Missouri won't get to vote on medical marijuana this year, Attorney General Lynch rejects the gateway theory, and more. 2 comments

Seattle Aims to Open the First Safe Injection Sites in the US [FEATURE]

A broad-based heroin and opioids task force has recommended them. The mayor, the county executive, and the county sheriff are on board. But what about the feds? 4 comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

The FBI is investigating a pair of Louisville narcs, the state police are investigating thefts at a Massachusetts police department, a Philly cop gets busted sending pot through the mail, and more. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

The governors of Delaware and New Jersey sign medical marijuana expansion bills, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson kicks in a million bucks to fend off medical marijuana in Florida, Montana patients are losing access to providers, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Nashville Decriminalizes (Sort Of), MO Judge to Rule on Init Signatures, More... (9/21/16)

It's all marijuana news today, and there's not even much of that. Nashville semi-decriminalizes small-time possession, a study finds New Mexico could make big bucks off legalization, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Seattle Call for Injection Sites, Duterte Wants More Lethal Drug War, More... (9/20/16)

A Seattle/King County heroin task force has recommended two safe injection sites be established, a California bill to let landlords ban medical marijuana smoking dies, Nevada legalization foes get organized, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: LA Times Endorses Prop 64, Urgent Action Time on Kratom, More... (9/19/16)

Donations are starting to flow for and against reform initiatives, California's largest newspaper endorses pot legalization, so do Italian cops, a new study suggest medical marijuana may reduce opioid-related auto fatalities, it's time to act to keep kratom off Schedule I, and more. 7 comments

Chronicle AM: AK Marijuana Social Club Battle, Oregonians Like Legalization, More... (9/16/15)

Oregonians have no regrets about legalizing weed, a new Cato report studies the impact of state-level legalization so far, the Alaska battle over marijuana social clubs gets heated, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: DOD Could Become More Flexible on Marijuana, MI MedMJ Regs Pass, More... (9/15/16)

Defense Secretary Ash Carter seems pretty mellow about marijuana, more workers are testing positive for illegal drugs, medical marijuana advances in Massachusetts, Michigan, and New Jersey, and more. comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Mississippi police chief shoots himself during an investigation into asset forfeiture funds, a Massachusetts police officer shoots herself during an investigation into thefts from her evidence room, an Ohio cop goes to prison for lying on drug search warrants and stealing big time, and more. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

As all eyes turn toward marijuana legalization initiatives looming in November, it's been pretty quiet on the medical marijuana front. At least there's good news from Michigan. comments

Chronicle AM: CA&MA Polls, Kratom Proponents Mobilize, Canada OKs Prescription Heroin; More... (9/14/16)

The polling is looking good in Massachusetts and better in California, there will be no initiative for Michigan this year, kratom proponents fight a proposed DEA ban, Canada gives the go-ahead for expanded heroin prescribing, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: MA Init Gets Big Bucks, Chicago's West Side is Heroin "Epicenter", More... (9/12/16)

The California legalization campaign heats up, the Massachusetts legalization campaign is sitting pretty with lots of cash, a North Carolina town becomes the first in the South to adopt Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) for drug users, and more. comments

Four Dead in Drug War Killings in Five Days, Including One Police Officer

The first week of September was a bloody one in the domestic drug war. 1 comment

Fentanyl Maker Kicks In Half a Million to Defeat Arizona Marijuana Legalization

An Arizona pharmaceutical company that manufactures the synthetic opioid fentanyl donates big time to marijuana legalization foes there. 2 comments

Chronicle AM: House GOP Wants Unemployment Drug Tests, MI Senate OKs Dispensaries, More... (9/9/16)

House Republicans unleash another drug testing for benefits campaign, marijuana legalization foes start making moves, Michigan has moved a big step closer to explicitly allowing dispensaries, and more. comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

More jails guards go down, a Louisiana drug task force head gets nailed for ripping off the feds, a Memphis cop gets nailed for trying to extort an alleged drug dealer, and more. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

In a surprise move, the conservative American Legion comes out for marijuana rescheduling, Arkansas medical marijuana initiatives see lawsuits fly, Ohio is now a medical marijuana state, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: MI Init Nixed, MedMJ Legal in OH, Cartels Shoot Down Mexican Chopper, More.. (9/8/16)

Alaska cannabis cafes are delayed again, Michigan legalizers strike out in court, Ohio becomes the latest medical marijuana state, and more. 2 comments

Chronicle AM: AZ & CA MJ Polls, AR & OK MedMJ Lawsuits; Filipino Massacre Continues; More... (9/7/16)

New polls have good news for Arizona legalizers and better news for California ones, more lawsuits get filed over Arkansas and Oklahoma medical marijuana initiatives, the Philippines' murderous drug war continues apace, the Indonesia drug fighters want to imitate it, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: Denver Pot Social Use Init Makes Ballot, Kratom Fight Gathers Steam, More... (9/6/16)

Big city Texas prosecutors are increasingly dropping small-time pot cases, a Denver social use marijuana initiative qualifies for the ballot, kratom proponents move to block the DEA effort to place it on Schedule I, and more, including lots of international items. comments

A Long Hot Summer of Drug War Deaths [FEATURE]

An unarmed young black man killed in a raid that netted two grams of weed was only the latest to die at the hands of police in drug war violence. 5 comments

Chronicle AM: MT MedMJ Patients Out of Luck, Christie Signs Needle Exchange Funding, More... (9/1/16)

It the end of easy access for Montana medical marijuana patients, the Arizona Supreme Court rejects the last challenge to that state's legalization initiative, the second Arkansas medical marijuana initiative is now officially on the ballot, Chris Christie signs a needle exchange funding bill, and more. 1 comment

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

An Ohio sheriff gets popped for his pain pill habit, a New Mexico cop videotapes himself stealing marijuana, a San Francisco cop heads to prison for illegal tactics and lying about them, and more. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

A federal appeals court upholds the ban on gun sales to medical marijuana patients, Arkansans will have two medical marijuana initiatives on the ballot, Oklahomans will likely have none, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Obama Commutes More Sentences, Court Rules No Guns for MJ Patients, More... (8/31/16)

President Obama continues commuting drug sentences, the 9th Circuit upholds a ban on gun ownership for medical marijuana patients, Albuquerque gets sued over its asset forfeiture scheme, and more. comments

DEA Places Kratom on Schedule I, the Same Status as Heroin

Kratom is used by chronic pain sufferers and people wishing to get off or stay off opioids, but not for much longer. 10 comments

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