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Drug War Chronicle #494 - July 20, 2007

1. Editorial: Why Should the Drug Czar's Office Even Exist?

Catching the drug czar's office in deceptions, misconduct, and generally inexplicable behavior is getting to be like shooting fish in a barrel. What is the evidence to justify the agency's existence at all?

2. Feature: In Spreading Scandal Over White House Political Operations, House Panel Head Accuses Drug Czar's Office of Electioneering

Citing smoking-gun memos between White House political staffers and the drug czar's office, the head of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Tuesday accused the Bush administration of politicizing the Office of National Drug Control Policy. And they're deposing witnesses.

3. Feature: Pain Doctor and Patient Advocates Get a Congressional Hearing… Finally

For the first time in more than a decade, the DEA came under congressional scrutiny last week for its interference in the practice of medicine. Pain patient and doctor advocates got a chance to tell a congressional committee about the crisis in chronic pain and how the DEA gets in the way.

4. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A New York City cop helps drug dealers rip off other drug dealers, a North Carolina cop builds a really impressive bad cop resume, a former North Carolina sheriff can't account for much of his evidence, and an Indiana cop gets a slap on the wrist for stealing from a drug suspect.

5. Medical Marijuana: DEA, ONDCP Take Flak on Dispensary Raids, Research Obstacles in House Committee Hearing

DEA and ONDCP functionaries got a grilling on medical marijuana issues at a House subcommittee hearing last week.

6. Marijuana: Drug Czar Calls Pot Growers Dangerous Terrorists

Drug czar John Walters suffered a severe bout of rhetorical excess last Thursday at a press conference in Northern California, claiming that marijuana growers are violent criminal terrorists who would not hesitate to help foreign terrorists enter the country and inflict mass casualties.

7. Medical Marijuana: ONDCP Claims Steve Kubby Has Changed His Mind, Kubby Says No Way!

The drug czar's office told Congress that California medical marijuana activist Steve Kubby had changed his tune. Kubby begs to differ.

8. Drug Use: One in 12 US Workers Uses Drugs, SAMHSA Says

One out of 12 full-time workers in the US reported using drugs within the past month, according to survey data released by SAMHSA.

9. Harm Reduction: Jersey City Signs Up for Needle Exchange

The Jersey City City Council voted Wednesday for an ordinance allowing the city to participate in a pilot needle exchange program. It's the fifth Garden State city to do so since Gov. Corzine signed a needle exchange bill in December.

10. Southwest Asia: Afghan Poppy Crop Sets New Record, US Ambassador Says

The 2007 Afghan opium poppy crop has set another record, the US ambassador conceded this week. All the more reason to embark on forced eradication, he said.

11. Europe: Britain to Review Marijuana's Classification, Could Be Moved Back to Tougher Drug Schedule

New British Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced Tuesday that his government will seek a review of marijuana's status as a Class C drug -- with an eye toward moving it back to the more serious Class B.

12. Feedback: Do You Read Drug War Chronicle?

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13. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

Time for the Drug Czar to Resign, Sen. Coburn Thinks Police Should Shoot Drug Suspects in the Back, Clinton Promises to End Federal Raids on Medical Marijuana Dispensaries, The Difference Between Pot Growers and Terrorists, Rudy Giuliani's Position on OxyContin and Pain Management Is Correct , When Oversight Means Oversight: Waxman Goes After Walters for Politicizing His Office, more...

14. Web Scan

World Politics Review on Colombia fumigation, The Nation on pardons for drug offenders, American Prospect on crack sentencing reform prospects, The Hill, Ibogaine in Barcelona, DrugTruth Network, Belgium drug consumption rooms video, France marijuana study

15. Weekly: This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

16. Job Opportunity: Research and Policy Associate, Vera Institute of Justice, DC

The Vera Institute of Justice seeks a research and policy associate to work in its Washington DC Office.

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19. Announcement: New Format for the Reformer's Calendar

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Permission to Reprint: This issue of Drug War Chronicle is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

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