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Drug War Chronicle #549 - August 29, 2008

1. Feature: California Attorney General Issues Medical Marijuana Guidelines -- Mostly Good But Some Problems, Say Advocates

After more than a decade of conflict and confusion over California's medical marijuana laws, state Attorney General Jerry Brown Monday issued a series of guidelines for patients, providers, and police designed to specify just what is and is not allowable under the law.

2. Feature: Afghan Opium Production Declines Slightly From Record Levels

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime reported this week that Afghan opium production has decreased slightly this year. While the West praised the findings, independent observers were much less sanguine.

3. Offer: Unique and Important New Book on Medical Marijuana

"Dying to Get High," by sociologists Wendy Chapkis and Richard Webb, is a groundbreaking work that provides an in-depth portrait of one of the country's most well-known medical marijuana collectives.

4. Students: Intern at DRCNet and Help Stop the Drug War!

Apply for an internship at DRCNet for this fall (or spring), and you could spend the semester fighting the good fight!

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

A key Coast Guard anti-drug fighter gets caught doing cocaine, plus the usual array of miscreants in blue.

6. Medical Marijuana: Washington State Fight Over Allowable Quantities Continues

Washington voters approved medical marijuana a decade ago, but confusion over what constitutes an allowable quantity of medicine and plants continues. Now, the state health department is trying to set rules, and patients aren't happy with what it's proposing.

7. Harm Reduction: Funds Begin to Flow to DC Needle Exchange Programs

For a decade, Congress has barred the city of Washington, DC, from spending money to fund needle exchange programs in an effort to slow the spread of HIV/AIDS. That ban was lifted earlier this year, and now the money is beginning to flow.

8. Law Enforcement: LEAP Barred From Asian-American Cops Meeting in Virginia

Somebody at the National Asian Peace Officers Association conference this week didn't want their members to hear from anti-prohibitionist cops. LEAP wants to know who and why.

9. Europe: Scottish Heroin Crackdown Sparks Violent Crime Increase

Police in Scotland engineered a crackdown on heroin in Dundee, only to find they had created a crime wave.

10. Death Penalty: More Executions in Iran, Saudi Arabia

This month, Iran has once again led the way in executing drug offenders.

11. Australia: Strong Support for Medical Marijuana, Needle Exchange Programs, National Survey Finds

Australians showed strong support for medical marijuana and harm reduction measures in a national survey. Marijuana legalization? Not so much, at least not yet.

12. Weekly: This Week in History

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

13. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"How Much More Public Support Does Medical Marijuana Really Need?," "New Medical Marijuana Regulations Are a Good Thing," "Police Cannot Identify Good Marijuana," "'Extremely Small Amount' of Marijuana Causes Panic Throughout Massachusetts," "California Attorney General Tells Police to Uphold Medical Marijuana Laws," "Biden is a 'Moderate' on Crime Issues?," "Joe Biden's Awful Record on Drug Policy."

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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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