Drug War Chronicle #559 - November 7, 2008

1. Feature: Big Day for Pot -- Decriminalization Wins in Massachusetts, Medical Marijuana in Michigan, All Local Initiatives Win, Too!

Marijuana won big in Tuesday's election. Every state and local initiative on the ballot won, and by impressive margins, despite the best efforts of cops, prosecutors, and the drug czar.

2. Feature: Sentencing Reform Initiative Defeated in California, "Tough on Crime" Initiatives Win in Oregon

California's "treatment not jail" Proposition 5 is defeated and so is one "tough on crime" initiative, but another one won favor with Golden State voters. Meanwhile, dueling "tough on crime" initiatives also passed in Oregon.

3. Appeal: New Times Bring New Opportunities for Drug Policy Reform

StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet) is a nonpartisan organization, and no major party nominee for US President has yet supported enough of our mission to change that. Nevertheless, the views expressed in President-Elect Obama's books, speeches and campaign appearances are mostly positive, and enactment of them would make a major difference in drug policy and help many thousands of people. We need your help and your participation to fight this important fight at this time of opportunity.

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

Another NYPD bad apple, a probation officer with a bad habit, and more jail guards ending up on the inside looking out.

5. ONDCP: Who Will the Next Drug Czar Be? Not William Bratton

Who will replace drug czar John Walters in an Obama administration? The early speculation centered on LAPD Chief William Bratton, but now he has removed himself from consideration.

6. Medical Marijuana: New Washington State Quantity Limits Now in Effect

New regulations that stipulate how much medical marijuana Washington state patients can grow and possess are now in effect.

7. Conference: Students for Sensible Drug Policy, College Park, Maryland (DC), November 21-23

At ten years out, Students for Sensible Drug Policy is stronger than ever. Please come out for this special conference and alumni reunion.

8. Latin America: Plan Colombia Didn't Work, GAO Report Says

The US has spent $6 billion on Plan Colombia since 1999. The goal was to reduce coca and cocaine production by half. They didn't even come close, a new GAO report reveals.

9. Latin America: Mexican Interior Minister, Top Anti-Drug Fighter Killed in Mysterious Plane Crash

Two of Mexico's top drug fighters were killed Tuesday in an unexplained plane crash in Mexico City. The Mexican press is rife with speculation they were assassinated.

10. Southeast Asia: Philippines Supreme Court Upholds Drug Testing for Students, Workers, But Not Political Candidates or Criminal Defendants

The Philippines Supreme Court has ruled on the constitutionality of random, suspicionless drug testing. It's fine for students and workers, but not for politicians or criminal defendants, the court held.

11. Latin America: Bolivia Suspends Operations By DEA

Already chilly relations between Bolivia and the US grew even chillier this weekend, as Bolivia's President Morales told the DEA to take a hike.

12. Europe: Denmark's Christiania Residents Sue for Control Over Their Enclave

Copenhagen's counterculture enclave of Christiania has been under attack by the conservative Danish government, but now its residents are fighting back in the courts as well as the streets.

13. Weekly: This Week in History

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

14. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"MSNBC Notices Popular Support for Marijuana Reform," "Will Obama End the Medical Marijuana Raids?," "Drug Czar Appointment Watch: William Bratton Says 'No Thanks'," "A Mandate For Marijuana Reform," "Medical Marijuana Wins in Michigan," "Mark Souder Re-elected in Indiana," "Huge Win for Marijuana Decriminalization in Massachusetts," "Drug Czar Mixes Cannabis, Caffeine, and Cartography With Catastrophic Results," "Could the Next Drug Czar be William Bratton?," "Mexico's Top Drug Cop Resigns Amidst Corruption Controversy," "If You're in California, Support Treatment-Not-Incarceration for Drug Offenses," "If You're in Michigan, Support Medical Marijuana," "If You're in Massachusetts, Support Marijuana Decriminalization."

15. 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!

16. Volunteers Needed: Phone Campaign in DC, Writers from Anywhere

StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet) is seeking volunteers in the DC area to help with our membership drive; and from anywhere to help with a writing-based project starting next month.

17. Feedback: Do You Read Drug War Chronicle?

Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we need your feedback to evaluate our work and make the case for Drug War Chronicle to funders. We need donations too.

18. Webmasters: Help the Movement by Running DRCNet Syndication Feeds on Your Web Site!

Support the cause by featuring automatically-updating Drug War Chronicle and other DRCNet content links on your web site!

19. Resource: DRCNet Web Site Offers Wide Array of RSS Feeds for Your Reader

A new way for you to receive DRCNet articles -- Drug War Chronicle and more -- is now available.

20. Resource: Reformer's Calendar Accessible Through DRCNet Web Site

Visit our new web site each day to see a running countdown to the events coming up the soonest, and more.
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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