ON THE SPEAKEASY BLOG

Against Jeff Sessions for Attorney General

The president-elect's nominee for Attorney General is a big-time drug warrior who could derail both sentencing reform and marijuana legalization. Please write your Senators in opposition to this nomination. 21 comments

AP: California Legalizes Marijuana!

The Associated Press has called it early. 0 comments

North Dakota Okays Medical Marijuana

With most of the votes counted, Measure 5 is cruising toward victory. 0 comments

Partial Initiative Results: Arkansas, Maine, Massachusetts, North Dakota

Florida has already won. Now returns are coming in from four more initiative states. 0 comments

Florida Passes Medical Marijuana!

First southern state, and a big one. 3 comments

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? 13 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. 0 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. 11 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

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FROM THE CHRONICLE

Chronicle AM: WA SIJs Win Court Ruling, Houston DA Goes Deep on Reforms, More.. (10/19/17)

Hemp farming comes a step closer in Wisconsin, safe injection sites win a court battle in suburban Seattle, Houston's DA is proving to be a real criminal justice reformer, and more. 1 comment

Senate Heavyweights File Sentencing Reform Bill [FEATURE]

The compromise bill is generally reformist, but includes some objectionable new mandatory minimums, too. comments

Wine Country Fires Hit Northern California Pot Industry Hard

The flames are dying down in Northern California, but for the region's marijuana farmers, the pain is just beginning. comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Florida narc gets a case of sticky fingers, and a whole bunch of jail and prison guards break bad. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

The Justice Department concedes it cannot prosecute the Kettle Falls Five because of congressional bans on spending money to go after medical marijuana states, Arkansas regulators are swamped with grow and sales applications, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Dallas Ends Pot Possession Arrests, Possible Drug Czar Nominees, More... (10/18/17)

Dallas gives up on arresting pot possessors, the DOJ gives up on prosecuting the Kettle Falls Five, there's a new list of possible drug czar nominees, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Trump Drug Czar Nominee Withdraws, NFL Endorses Sentencing Reform, More... (10/17/17)

Stories pile up when you spend a week at the drug reform conference: Trump's choice for drug czar is out, the NFL endorses sentencing reform, California's governor signs a sentencing reform bill, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: Dutch to Pilot Legal Marijuana Grows, OR Marijuana Tax $$$, More... (10/10/17)

The Dutch finally begin to address their marijuana "back door problem," Canadian Mounties and tribal members clash over a pot shop, California's governor vetoes an opioid task force bill as redundant, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Fed Sentencing Reform Bill Filed, Colombia Coca Clashes, More... (10/6/17)

Leading senators roll out a federal sentencing reform bill, Jeff Sessions ramps up the Safe Neighborhoods program, the VA doubles down against medical marijuana, more clashes erupt in Colombia's coca producing areas, and more. 1 comment

Chronicle AM: MA Advocates Push for No Pot Tax $$$ for Towns That Ban Pot Ops, More... (10/5/17)

It's all marijuana today, with Washington state considering personal grows, Delaware pondering legalization, Massachusetts activists trying to put the screws to towns that ban stores, and more. 1 comment

Federal Bill Would Reverse Perverse Incentives for Mass Incarceration [FEATURE]

For more than two decades, federal Justice grants have incentivized states to increase their prison populations. Now, it's time to do the opposite. comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

We've only got a couple this week, but they're both pretty juicy and involve federal law enforcement officials. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

Florida is slow getting out of the gate with cultivation licenses, a Georgia lawmaker is pushing to makes the state's CBD law workable, Michigan lawmakers are moving to keep dispensaries open during a year-end switch over, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Alaska Towns Reject Marijuana Bans, DEA Names Acting Head, More...(10/4/17)

The DEA names an in-house acting administrator, the Massachusetts high court takes up the question of whether judges can order addicts to remain drug-free, Canada advances on looming marijuana legalization, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Atlanta A Step Closer to MJ Decrim, Drug Treatment Privacy Threat, More... (10/3/17)

Atlanta is one step away from decriminalizing marijuana possession, patient advocacy and health care groups unite behind a campaign to protect the privacy of drug treatment patients, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Trump DEA Pick Has Issues, FL MedMJ Licenses Delayed, More... (10/2/17)

The man Trump will reportedly name to head the DEA has some racial profiling issues in his past, the Global Commission on Drugs issued recommendations on dealing with the opioid crisis, the 6th Circuit slaps down the DEA in an asset forfeiture case, and more. comments

The 2017 International Drug Policy Reform Conference, October 11-14, Atlanta

The 2017 International Drug Policy Reform Conference is the major biannual gathering of drug policy reformers from around the world. comments

Chronicle AM: Quebec To Have Gov't Pot Shops; Seattle, WA State Sue Pharma Cos, More... (9/29/17)

Nevada sets legal marijuana sales records, Quebec will go with government marijuana shops, Seattle and the state of Washington file lawsuits over the opioid crisis, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Houston Quits Trying "Trace Amount" Drug Cases, US Chides Colombia, More... (9/28/17)

San Antonio quits arresting small-time pot violators, Houston quits prosecuting folks caught with trace amounts of drugs, Vermont begins pondering how to do pot legalization, the US chides Colombia on coca and the FARC, and more. comments

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Busy, busy: A long-time fugitive rogue Chicago cop gets cop, a DHS agent gets nailed for taking big bucks to help a Cali Cartel operative make an indictment go away, a Vermont cop plied a woman addict with drugs in order to get laid, and more. comments

Study Finds Marijuana Legalization Doesn't Drive Increased Use, But Vice Versa

A new study regurgitates some old findings, but the point remains worth making. comments

Medical Marijuana Update

It was a pretty quiet week on the medical marijuana front, with all the action taking place in the courts. A Florida farmer sues over grower licenses, a Montana dispensary operator sues over a local ban, and more. comments

Chronicle AM: Citing Trump, DEA Head Quits; Atlanta Moves Toward MJ Decrim, More... (9/27/17)

DEA Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg is outta here, Atlanta moves closer to pot decriminalization, San Francisco goes slow on legal pot sales, Florida's governor wants to restrict opioid prescriptions, and more. comments

Drug Arrests, Marijuana Arrests Both Up Last Year, FBI Reports [FEATURE]

The mass arrests are at odds with a majority of the public that supports ending the drug war and treating drug use as a health issue. comments

Chronicle AM: Maine Considers Marijuana Social Clubs With No Smoking, More... (9/26/17)

Maine considers marijuana social clubs where you can't smoke, some Maryland criminal justice reforms passed last year will go into effect on Sunday, and more. comments

The 2017 International Drug Policy Reform Conference, October 11-14, Atlanta

The 2017 International Drug Policy Reform Conference is the major biannual gathering of drug policy reformers from around the world. comments

Chronicle AM: FBI: Drug Arrests Up Last Year, Colombia Coca Conflict, More... (9/25/17)

The FBI's latest Uniform Crime Report shows an increase in drug arrests last year, there's conflict in the coca fields in Colombia, British Columbia gets set to figure out how it's going to handle legal weed, and more. comments

Is North Korea Peddling Dope to Get Around Sanctions?

It certainly looks that way. If so, then drug prohibition may prevent the economic embargo from having the desired impact. 7 comments

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