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. 7 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? 11 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. 17 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...

5 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. 4 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. 5 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: CA Teamsters Donate to Anti-Legalization Effort, OH MedMJ Bill Moves, More... (5/24/16)

Arizona legalizers are closing in on their needed signatures, California Teamsters kick in some bucks to oppose legalization, the Patagonia clothing company gets behind industrial hemp, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Bratton Blames MJ for Prohibition Violence, Opioid Prescriptions Decline, More... (5/23/16)

Bill Bratton misses the point on prohibition and violence, Nebraskans will have to wait for medical marijuana, Fentanyl is displacing heroin in Vancouver, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: MD Gov Signs Forfeiture, AZ Legalization Foes Get Alcohol Money, More... (5/20/16)

Maryland's Republican governor reverses course and signs an asset forfeiture reform bill, Arizona marijuana legalization opponents are getting significant alcohol industry funding, Michigan legalizers fight to keep an open time frame for signature gathering, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: Sanders Endorses CA Init, Congress Moves to Help Vets Get MedMJ, More... (5/19/16)

Marijuana activists prepare to march on the White House, Congress moves on medical marijuana for veterans, Bernie Sanders endorses California's AUMA legalization initiative, and more. 2 comments

Congress Moves to Allow VA Physicians to Recommend Medical Marijuana to Veterans

The move is intended to ease access to medical marijuana for veterans suffering from PTSD, serious injuries, and other debilitating conditions. comments

Frustrated Marijuana Legalizers Head for the White House

Marijuana activists are set to protest pot prohibition at the White House Friday. They want Obama to deschedule it, but that's just for starters. 3 comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A sticky-fingered Wisconsin cop gets nailed, a truth-challenged Washington state cop gets canned, and more. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

In Oklahoma and Ohio, medical marijuana half-measures are being challenged by initiative campaigns, Oakland tries to create some racial equity in the industry, Maryland medical marijuana hits another delay, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Shocking Forfeiture Poll, Oakland Racial Balance in MJ Industry Bill, More... (5/18/16)

Organized opposition is trying to emerge in California, legalization in Oregon is creating jobs and payrolls, Oakland attempts to redress racial imbalance in the legal marijuana business but catches some flak, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: MD MedMJ Delay, Ohio's Bad "Good Samaritan" Bill, No RI Referendum, More... (5/17/16)

Another New England legislature fails to act on pot legalization, Maryland's long-awaited medical marijuana program is again delayed, Wisconsin's GOP attorney general wants all employers to drug test their workers, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: MJ Taxes Could Generate Billions, Canada to Allow Prescription Heroin, More... (5/16/16)

A Tax Foundation study finds that legal pot could generate $28 billion a year in tax revenues, CBD cannabis oil isn't enough for Oklahoma medical marijuana activists, Canada will allow prescription heroin, and more. comments

In Cutting Edge Move, Canada to Allow Prescription Heroin

In a culmination of trial programs and research, and in a reversal of policies of the former Harper Administration, Health Canada has cleared the way for prescription heroin for tough cases. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: ME Poll Has 55% for Legalization, Indonesia Executing More Drug Prisoners, More... (5/13/16)

A new Maine poll has majority support for legalization, Indonesia is about to execute more drug war prisoners, and more. 2 comments

Chronicle AM: Millions Would Grow Pot If They Could, Hemp Returns to WV, More... (5/12/16)

Congress acts on opioid and drug trafficking bills, million want to grow pot if it's legal, a CBD cannabis oil bill moves in Louisiana, a medical marijuana bill is killed in Missouri, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Racial Disparities in CO Pot Arrests Persist, NH Decriminalization Moves, More... (5/11/16)

A new poll has good news for Florida's medical marijuana initiative, pot decriminalization is one Senate vote away in New Hampshire, and more. 1 comment

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Georgia cop gets nailed for running with the Gangster Disciples, a New Jersey cop gets busted for peddling pot, an Indiana cop gets popped for peddling pills, and more. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

Missouri looks poised to vote on medical marijuana this fall, Florida looks poised to pass it this fall, an Ohio medical marijuana bill advances, and more. comments

Obama's Effort to Free Drug War Prisoners Hits Bureaucratic Roadblocks [FEATURE]

More than 17,000 federal drug war prisoners have clemency applications pending under a Justice Department program, but with Obama's term coming to an end, the clock is ticking. comments

Chronicle AM: AAA Slams Per Se Marijuana Drugged Driving Laws, Brit College Hands Out Pill Test Kits, More... (5/10/16)

In a major study, AAA finds no scientific basis for drugged driving laws that assume impairment based on THC levels, Orlando becomes the latest city to downgrade small-time pot possession, the Ohio House approves a medical marijuana bill--but no smoking--an English university begins handing out pill test kits to students, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Global Marijuana Marches, Voters Split on Legalization in MA Poll, More ... (5/9/16)

They marched for weed in Buenos Aires and Rio de Janiero, New York and Toronto, and many other cities; a Massachusetts poll shows a dead heat for legalization there, Missouri looks set to vote on medical marijuana this year, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: VT Legalization Really Dead This Year, Huge Mexican Pot Seizure, More... (5/6/16)

A final nail in the coffin for Vermont legalization this year, the California legalization campaign gets some police support, the Mexican army makes a huge pot bust, and more. 3 comments

Chronicle AM: Bumper Afghan Opium Crop, No Monopoly Needed for MJ Research, Says State, More... (5/5/16)

It's harvest time in Afghanistan and the poppy crop is bountiful, the State Department says UN drug treaties don't require a NIDA monopoly on research marijuana, CBD bills get signed by the governor in Alabama and go to the governor in Oklahoma, South Dakota's internal possession law is obstructing sentencing reforms, and more. 3 comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Two cops get their hands slapped for stealing the drug evidence and a former NYPD officer goes down for slinging Oxycontin. 1 comment

Medical Marijuana Update

A CBD bill passes in Alabama, the feds give up on going after the country's largest dispensary, Oakland moves to expand medical marijuana operations, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: CA Init Hands in Plenty of Signatures, CT Passes Sweeping Opioids Bill, More... (5/4/16)

Californians will have a chance to vote on marijuana legalization this year, Oakland moves ahead with medical marijuana expansion, Connecticut passes a sweeping bill aimed at the opioid crisis, and more. 1 comment

Feds Give Up on Effort to Seize Nation's Largest Medical Marijuana Dispensary [FEATURE]

The federal government's war on medical marijuana in California appears to be ending not with a bang, but a whimper. comments

Chronicle AM: VT Legalization Bill Killed, Feds End Harborside Action, More... (5/3/16)

Marijuana legalization is dead in Vermont this year, Tennessee cuts repeat pot possession penalties, the German health minister says medical marijuana is coming early next year, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: ME to Vote on Legalization, AK "Pot Cafes," AL Passes CBD MedMJ, More... (5/2/16)

Lots of Maine news today, Alaska could see "pot cafes," a New Hampshire asset forfeiture bill gets gutted under police pressure, and more. 2 comments

It's Official: Maine Will Vote on Marijuana Legalization in November

Maine campaigners have overcome recalcitrant state officials and qualified their initiative for the November ballot. 1 comment

Video Killed the Drug Conviction: Chicago Narcs Busted Lying Through Their Teeth [FEATURE]

Police perjuring themselves to prosecute the drug war is nothing new, but managing to nail them for it is remarkable. Joseph Sperling did just that. 6 comments

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