Drug War Chronicle #576 - March 13, 2009

1. Feature: Meeting in Vienna, UN Commission on Narcotics Drugs Prepares to Head Further Down Same Prohibitionist Path, But Dissenting Voices Grow Louder

The UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) met in Vienna this week to draft a political declaration and plan of action to guide international drug policy for the next decade. While the prohibitionists prevailed in the end, the voices of dissent are growing ever louder and more powerful.

2. Feature: The Boston Ibogaine Forum -- from Shamanism to Cutting Edge Science

Ibogaine received concerted attention for its addiction treatment and other properties at a recent conference in Boston. Here's a report.

3. Marijuana: US Rep. Loretta Sanchez Ponders "Pilot Program" for Pot Regulation

A US congresswoman from California suggested Thursday that it could be time for a marijuana legalization pilot program. Her home state would be an apt place to try it, she said.

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

From murder most foul to ripping off Crimestoppers, our corrupt cops run the gamut this week.

5. Sentencing: New York Senate to Address Rockefeller Drug Law Reform in Budget -- Meanwhile, Another Damning Study Appears

The New York Assembly passed a Rockefeller drug law reform bill last week. Now, the Senate has decided to submerge Rockefeller reform within a broader budget package in a bid to avoid having to take individual votes on it. Meanwhile, as if supporters needed any more ammunition for reform, another damning report is out this week.

6. ONDCP: It's Official -- Kerlikowske Named as Drug Czar, But Biden Looms

The Obama administration has named Seattle Police Chief Gil Kerlikowske as the new drug czar... or is it Joe Biden?

7. Law Enforcement: Cops Go Phishing for Dope at Virginia Concerts, Reel in Plenty

Like the Grateful Dead before it, the jam band Phish has legions of loyal fans, many of whom enjoy their music with a little herbal or chemical alteration. It was a field day for cops as the band played a three-night show in Virginia.

8. Asset Forfeiture: Highway Robbery in Texas

Tenaha, Texas, lies between Houston and the casinos of Shreveport across the Louisiana line. The town thought it hit the jackpot with a sleazy policing scheme, but now it may be coming up snake eyes.

9. Marijuana: Pot Prohibition Causes Harm While Not Achieving Goals, Report Finds

Marijuana prohibition doesn't achieve its stated goals, it costs a lot of money, and use levels would be similar under a relaxed regime, a pair of University of Washington researchers report.

10. Medical Marijuana: Minnesota Bill Passes Another Senate Hurdle, Wins First House Vote

The Minnesota medical marijuana bill has passed another pair of hurdles as it makes its way toward a hostile governor.

11. Harm Reduction: Washington State Good Samaritan Bill Would Protect Those Bringing Overdosed Friends to Medical Care

People suffering drug overdoses sometimes die because their companions either delay seeking medical assistance or fail to act at all for fear of getting arrested themselves. New Mexico has a law providing limited immunity for people in those circumstances. Now, a Washington legislator hopes to make his state the second to pass such a law.

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

"New Drug Czar Appointed, Makes Ridiculous Remark," "Ten Years Later, the United Nations Anti-Drug Efforts Have Accomplished Nothing," "NBC Insults Marijuana Users," "Propaganda Alert: Marijuana Makes You Bad at Video Games," "Are Republicans Turning Against the Drug War?," "Federal Prosecutors Seem Confused About Obama's Medical Marijuana Policy," "Why Are Democrats Barking About Rush Limbaugh's Drug Use?," "Police Officer in Cowboy Hat Talks Drug Legalization on Al Jazeera," "Drug Policy Reform Video and Poster Contest Winners Announced," "Contemplating Marijuana Legalization."

14. Students: Intern at StoptheDrugWar (DRCNet) and Help Stop the Drug War!

Apply for an internship at DRCNet and you could spend a semester fighting the good fight!

15. Job Opportunity: Outreach Director, Students for Sensible Drug Policy, San Francisco, CA or Washington, DC

Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) is seeking a highly motivated, well-organized individual to help promote alternatives to the failed War on Drugs.

16. 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.
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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