Format: 2021-05

Drug War Chronicle #563 - December 5, 2008

1. Feature: On the 75th Anniversary of the Repeal of Prohibition, Reformers Ponder the Past and Look to the Future

Alcohol Prohibition was repealed 75 years ago today. Are there lessons to be learned, and is it going to take another 75 years to end drug prohibition?

2. Feature: South Dakota Medical Marijuana Backers Take Aim at the Statehouse

South Dakota has the dubious distinction of being the only state to defeat an initiative that would legalize medical marijuana, but that's not stopping advocates there. They have a bill ready for the legislature; now all they need are some sponsors.

3. Fun Feature: Pictures from Alcohol Prohibition

Pictures from prohibition days -- enforcers, violators, activists -- courtesy the Hagley Museum and Library, a collection chronicling American enterprise and the legacy of the du Pont family, in Wilmington, Delaware.

4. 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.

5. Appeal: Tax-Deductible Donations Needed for StoptheDrugWar.org's Educational Work

StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet) seeks tax deductible donations as year's end approaches for our educational programs -- especially our web site, on which readership continues to go up and up.

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

A big corruption bust in Chicago, an ugly story out of upstate New York, and a sticky-fingered narc in Michigan, plus a former Schenectady police chief cuts a deal and heads for prison.

7. Medical Marijuana: US Supreme Court Declines to Hear Challenge to Appeals Court Ruling Protecting State Medical Marijuana Laws

Last year, a California appeals court ruled that state and local police are not required to enforce federal drug laws. Now, the US Supreme Court has declined a chance to overturn that ruling.

8. Marijuana: "Substantial" Settlement in Lawsuit in Case of DC Quadriplegic Who Died in Jail While Serving 10-Day Sentence for a Joint

A callous DC judge sentenced wheelchair-bound Jonathan Magbie to 10 days in jail for marijuana possession after he told her he would keep using it to ease his ills. He died before he made it halfway through his sentence, and now, DC and a local hospital will have to pay out the nose for their sins.

9. Marijuana: Chicago Heights Decriminalizes

The Chicago suburb of Chicago Heights has decriminalized marijuana possession.

10. Europe: Swiss Vote to Make Heroin Prescription Permanent, But Reject Marijuana Legalization

Voters in Switzerland Sunday easily approved prescribing heroin to addicts, but rejected marijuana legalization.

11. Europe: Dutch Magic Mushroom Ban Clears Final Hurdle, Now In Effect

You can't sell or grow magic mushrooms in Holland anymore.

12. Death Penalty: Another Month of Drug War Extremism, and America's Hands Are Bloody

More people were executed for drug offenses or sentenced to death for them last month. American citizens might want to note the involvement of the US military or anti-drug agents in a pair of these cases.

13. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"DC Pays Dearly After Letting a Medical Marijuana Patient Die in Jail," "Not Arresting Marijuana Users is Too Confusing For Police," "Medical Marijuana Debate: MPP vs. ONDCP," "LEAP Celebrates the Repeal of Alcohol Prohibition," "Tainted Cocaine is a Consequence of Drug Prohibition," "Random Drug Testing Won't Save the Children From Heroin," "Swiss Voters Approve Heroin Prescriptions, But Reject Marijuana Decriminalization," "Police Use Newspaper Ads to Recruit Snitches."

14. Weekly: This Week in History

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

15. Job Opportunity: Communications Assistant, Marijuana Policy Project, Washington, DC

The Marijuana Policy Project is seeking a Communications Assistant for the organization's main office in Washington, DC.

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 on which work has already begun.

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

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

Drug War Chronicle #562 - November 28, 2008

1. Feature: The Kids Are Alright -- The SSDP 10th International Conference

Campus drug reform activists from around the country -- and beyond -- gathered last weekend in College Park, Maryland, for SSDP's 10th annual international conference. They lobbied, they listened, they learned, and now they're heading back home well-energized to apply the lessons they learned.

2. Drug War Chronicle Book Review: "Cop in the Hood: My Year Policing Baltimore's Eastern District," by Peter Moskos (2008, Princeton University Press, 245 pp., $24.95 HB)

Harvard-trained sociologist Peter Moskos was interested in police socialization, so he joined the Baltimore PD and hit the mean streets of the city's Eastern District for more than a year as a uniformed officer. The book he wrote based on his experiences is an illuminating gem.

3. Appeal: Deductible and Non-Deductible Donations Needed for StoptheDrugWar.org's Educational and Lobbying Work in 2009

Earlier this month we wrote seeking support for StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet)'s lobbying programs, to help us lobby the Obama administration and Congress on causes near and dear to the hearts of drug reformers with which the President-Elect has said he agrees. We also seek tax deductible donations to our educational programs, especially our web site, on which readership continues to go up and up.

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

An Indiana prosecutor gets slapped again over shady asset forfeiture practices, a Texas trooper gets caught with the coke, and so does a North Carolina cop.

5. Clemency: President Bush Commutes Cocaine Sentences for Two, Grants 12 Pardons

As his term comes to a close, President George Bush has begun to exercise his pardon power, and a handful of drug offenders have benefited.

6. Medical Marijuana: California Supreme Court Tightens Definition of "Caregiver," Ruling Will Push Patients Toward Co-ops and Dispensaries

The California Supreme Court has made it more difficult for people to qualify as medical marijuana caregivers. That should push patients toward co-op and collective dispensaries -- except in areas where there aren't any.

7. Europe: At Cannabis Summit, Dutch Mayors Try to Address "Backdoor Problem" of Coffee Shop Supply, Broader Status of Pot

Dutch pot politics is heating up again, with mayors looking for a way to solve the "backdoor problem" with their coffee shops, and some in the conservative government wanting to see the coffee shops just go away.

8. Weekly: This Week in History

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

Drug War Chronicle #561 - November 21, 2008

1. Feature: Obama's Appointees Raise Questions in the Drug Reform Community

The drug war records of some key Obama picks -- Biden, Emanuel, Holder -- are prompting wailing and gnashing of teeth among some drug reformers, but others suggest it's better to keep working quietly on progress than obsess on the past.

2. Feature: No Post-Election Pause in Colorado -- Activists Attend Marijuana Boot Camp

With national elections just days behind them, some 300 Colorado marijuana reform activists wasted no time getting down to brass tacks as they met in Denver for the 2008 Colorado Marijuana Reform Seminar and Boot Camp.

3. Appeal: Tax-Deductible Donations Needed for StoptheDrugWar.org's Educational Work

Earlier this month we wrote seeking support for StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet)'s lobbying programs, to help us lobby the Obama administration and Congress on causes near and dear to the hearts of drug reformers with which the President-Elect has said he agrees. This week we are seeking tax deductible donations to our educational programs, especially our web site, on which readership continues to go up and up.

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

A trio of bad apples from Arizona, including a DARE officer with a penchant for sexual assault, made the news this week, while the city of Berwyn, Illinois, found itself in a bit of hot water over the way it used asset forfeiture funds.

5. Marijuana: Narrow Majority of Arkansans Favor Decriminalization, Poll Finds

Who knew? Marijuana decriminalization is polling above 50% in Arkansas. Arkansas!

6. Medical Marijuana: ASA Files Lawsuit Against California DMV Over Patient Drivers' License Revocation

The California Department of Motor Vehicles is jerking the drivers' licenses of medical marijuana patients, saying they are "drug abusers." Now, Americans for Safe Access has filed a lawsuit to make them cut it out.

7. Canada: BC Local Elections Bring Another Drug Reform Mayor to Vancouver, A Drug Reform Mayor Back to Grand Forks, and a Drug Reformer to Victoria's City Council

There were municipal elections across British Columbia Saturday, and drug reformers continued to hold power in Vancouver, were returned to the mayoralty in Grand Forks, and won a seat on the city council in Victoria.

8. Europe: Dutch Mayors Want Regulated Marijuana Production and Sales

While the conservative Dutch national government would like to see cannabis coffee shops go away, the mayors of the towns that have them beg to differ. In fact, most of them want to see production as well as sales tolerated.

9. Australia: Hemp Production Now Legal in New South Wales

The Australian state of New South Wales has joined Canada, China, and various European countries in allowing the cultivation of industrial hemp. Tough luck, American farmers.

10. Latin America: Bolivia's Morales Says Yes to Obama, No to the DEA

Bolivia's President Evo Morales said yes to Obama, but no to the DEA at the UN this week

11. Europe: British Public Opinion Headed in Wrong Direction on Drug Policy, Poll Finds

British attitudes toward drug users, sellers, and drug reform are heading in the wrong direction, according to a new poll.

12. Weekly: This Week in History

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

Drug War Chronicle #560 - November 14, 2008

1. Feature: Looking Forward -- The Prospects for Drug Reform in Obama's Washington

After eight years of Republican rule and the Bush presidency, drug policy and related reformers are ready for change. They have some concrete ideas, too. Here's a look at them and the prospects for change in Washington.

2. Feature: Looking Forward -- Who Should Be the Next Drug Czar?

With the Bush administration preparing to leave town, so is drug czar John Walters. Now the question is who will replace him... and should he be replaced at all?

3. Appeal: Tax-Deductible Donations Needed for StoptheDrugWar.org's Educational Work

Last week we wrote seeking support for StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet)'s lobbying programs, to help us lobby the Obama administration and Congress on causes near and dear to the hearts of drug reformers with which the President-Elect has said he agrees. This week we are seeking tax deductible donations to our educational programs, especially our web site, on which readership continues to go up and up.

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

Crooked policing sparks lawsuits in Oakland and New Haven, another jail guard goes down, so does a Border Patrol inspector, a Louisiana narc gets busted for burglary, and an Illinois cop gets caught with his hand in the cookie jar.

5. Evidence: Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in Drug Crime Lab Case

Do drug defendants have the constitutional right to cross-examine the laboratory analysts who prepare crime lab reports? That was the question before the Supreme Court in oral arguments Monday.

6. Salvia Divinorum: Ban Bill Filed in Texas Legislature, Another Would Bar Sales to Youth

Texas is the latest state to see an effort to ban salvia divinorum with a bill introduced this week. Another bill would limit its sales to adults, but it's not the one getting attention.

7. Paraphernalia: No More Felony Charges For Dirty Pipes or Syringes in Cleveland

People busted with dirty pipes or needles in Cleveland will no longer face felony drug possession charges -- unless they try really hard.

8. Hemp: North Dakota Farmers Head to Federal Appeals Court

A pair of would-be North Dakota hemp farmers were in a federal appeals court Wednesday as they resumed their bid to get the federal government out of their way.

9. Southeast Asia: Thai Government in New Drug Crackdown

Five years ago, the Thai government waged a "war on drugs" that left nearly 3,000 people dead in less than three months. Now, it has declared a new drug war, and human rights groups are issuing warnings.

10. Europe: Czech Lower House Approves Lower Marijuana Penalties

The lower house of the Czech parliament has approved reforms to the penal code that would decriminalize marijuana possession and separate "hard" and "soft" drugs.

11. Europe: Swiss to Vote on Marijuana Decriminalization, Heroin Prescription

The Swiss will vote November 30 on whether to decriminalize marijuana and whether to continue the government's ongoing four pillars drug strategy, complete with prescription heroin.

12. Weekly: This Week in History

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

13. Job Opportunities: Marijuana Policy Project, Arizona and Washington, DC

The Marijuana Policy Project is seeking a Legislative Analyst to work in its State Policies Department in Washington, and a Campaign Manager for an Upcoming Ballot Initiative in Arizona.
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.

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.

Drug War Chronicle #558 - October 31, 2008

1. Feature: Drug Policy Reform and Sentencing Initiatives on the November Ballot

With the elections a few days from now, we reprint our review from four weeks ago of drug policy and sentencing reform initiatives going to the ballot in several different states.

2. Drug War Chronicle Video Review: "Prince of Pot: The US v. Marc Emery," Directed by Nick Wilson (2008, Journeyman Pictures)

"Prince of Pot: The US v. Marc Emery" is a new documentary on Canada's most famous marijuana activist. We review it this week.

3. Feature: Signature Gathering for 2010 Oregon Cannabis Tax Act Initiative Suspended, Poor Poll Results Cited

It's back to the drawing board for the Oregon Cannabis Tax Act. Initiative organizers have suspended signature-gathering in the face of weak support in initial polling.

4. 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.

5. 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!

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

One cop offers bribes, one cop takes bribes, two cops take drugs and money. Just another week in the drug war.

7. Medical Marijuana: Montana Supreme Court Okays Use By Probationers, Parolees

Montana courts cannot bar medical marijuana patients from taking their medicine while on probation or parole, the state Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.

8. 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.

9. Europe: In Bid to Fend Off "Drug Tourists," Some Dutch Border Towns to Close Coffee Shops

Flooded with marijuana users from more repressive neighboring countries, some Dutch border town mayors are shutting down all their cannabis coffee shops. Other mayors are looking for a better solution.

10. Southwest Asia: US, UN Squabble Over Afghanistan Opium Production Drop, But Taliban Stash Suggests No Shortages Any Time Soon

Did Afghan opium production drop 6% this year or 31%? The US and the UN disagree, but it may be a moot point with the Taliban sitting on a huge stash that can be easily converted into a war chest.

11. Latin America: Mexico City to Decriminalize Marijuana Possession?

The head of the legislative assembly in Mexico's federal district (Mexico City) has introduced legislation that would decriminalize small-time marijuana possession and allow for the establishment of businesses to sell small amounts.

12. Latin America: US Drug Czar Supports Mexico Drug Decriminalization

Drug czar John Walters supports Mexico's drug decriminalization plan?!?! That's what he said last Friday, but there may be less to this than meets the eye.

13. Latin America: Citing Continuing Human Rights Violations, Amnesty International Urges US to Halt Military Aid to Colombia

Washington and Bogotá have both been talking up improvements in Colombia's human rights situation. But there is still plenty to be deeply concerned about, Amnesty International said in a report this week.

14. Weekly: This Week in History

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

15. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"Flex Your Rights Protests Random Searches in DC," "Telemarketers Refuse to Make 'Soft on Crime' Attacks Against Obama," "The Drug Czar Can't Stop Panicking About Medical Marijuana," "The Perfect Argument for Medical Marijuana in Michigan," "Corruption at the Top Levels of the Mexican Drug War," "Rumors of NYPD Sexually Assaulting a Marijuana Suspect," "Random Searches in Our Nation's Capital," "$5 Million to Catch One Drug Trafficker?," "Will Mexico's Drug War Violence Come to the US?," "'Economically, our Criminal Justice Policies are Cutting Our Throats'."

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.

Drug War Chronicle #557 - October 24, 2008

1. Feature: Beyond 2008 -- Looking Past the November US Elections

Right now, all eyes are on November 4, but leading drug reform groups are already looking down the road to 2010 and beyond.

2. Feature: NORML Does Berkeley

The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) held its 37th annual national conference in Berkeley, California. Here's a report.

3. 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.

4. Your Feedback: What Readers Have to Say About Drug War Chronicle

Thank you to the many Drug War Chronicle readers who have submitted feedback. Here is what a few of you have had to say.

5. 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.

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

Cops dealing drugs, cops stealing money. More of the same old same old.

7. Initiatives: Drug Czar, Prison Guards Gang Up on California's Treatment-Not-Jail Proposition 5

With election day less than two weeks away, the drug czar and California's prison guard union are trying to defeat California's groundbreaking treatment-not-jail Nonviolent Offender Rehabiliation Act (NORA) initiative.

8. Prevention: Drug Czar's Billion Dollar Anti-Drug Media Campaign a Waste of Money, Study Finds

The drug czar's National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign is an expensive failure, a new study has found.

9. Marijuana: Florida State Students Approve Marijuana-Alcohol Penalty Equalization Initiative

For the second time in three years, students at Florida State University have approved an initiative calling on administrators to equalize penalties for marijuana possession and underage alcohol consumption on campus.

10. South Pacific: DEA Mass Body Search of Plane Passengers Spurs Angry Reaction in Marianas

Earlier this month, DEA agents strip-searched 147 Chinese nationals arriving in Saipan on vacation. The government of the Northern Mariana Islands is most unhappy.

11. Addiction Treatment: Canadian NAOMI Study Finds Heroin Maintenance Safe, Cheap, Effective

Research results from the North American Opiate Maintenance Initiative (NAOMI) are in, and the researchers say heroin maintenance is safe, effective, and economical.

12. Europe: Dutch Marijuana Export Industry Generates $2.7 Billion a Year, Prohibition-Related Violence

Four out of every five pounds of pot grown in the Netherlands is destined for export, says a top Dutch cop, and the black market trade is generating violent crime as well as big profits.

13. Death Penalty: Iran Bars Executions of Minors for Drug Offenses, Continues to Execute Adults

Iran has announced it will not execute drug offenders who are minors. Meanwhile, it continues to execute drug offenders who are adults.

14. Weekly: This Week in History

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

15. Web Scan

Mexico Violence, Jail or Not to Jail for Relapse, Drug War for Budget Cutting, the Marijuana War on Young People, by Talvi, Newman, Conason and Armentano on Alternet, Huffington Post and Salon.

16. Job Opportunities: Marijuana Policy Project, Arizona and Nevada

The Marijuana Policy Project is hiring for six exciting positions -- one in Arizona, five in Nevada preparing for a 2012 ballot initiative.

17. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"Smoking Pot Won't Make You Stupid, But Stupid People Do Smoke Pot," "Parents Are Using Drug Dogs on Their Own Children," "Wow, I Almost Forgot It Was Drug Free Work Week," "Why Do Prison and Alcohol Lobbies Oppose Drug Treatment?," "Giuliani Robocall Attacks Obama on Drug Sentencing," "The Drug War is Destroying Mexico Right Before Our Eyes," "Could Mexico City Become the Next Amsterdam?," "The Drug War Sends White People Into Treatment, While Black People Get Felonies," "Drug Czar Tells Cartels to Surrender or Die," "More Drug War = More Violence," "Further Evidence That the Drug War Doesn't Protect Children," "DEA Thrills Schoolchildren With Awesome Drug War Parade."

18. 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.

19. 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!

20. 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.

21. 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.

Drug War Chronicle #556 - October 17, 2008

1. Feature: NATO, US Deepen Anti-Drug Operations in Afghanistan in Bid to Throttle Taliban

The drug war in Afghanistan is about to heat up. NATO has agreed to target drug traffickers and heroin labs aligned with the Taliban and Al Qaeda insurgency, and the US is quietly planning to put American soldiers on the ground with poppy eradication teams and their Afghan army protectors. The question is: Will any of this work?

2. Feature: Michigan Medical Marijuana Initiative Faces Organized Opposition

Michigan's medical marijuana initiative appears headed for victory in November, but now an organized opposition of the usual suspects has emerged, and the drug czar and his minion came to the state this week to try to derail it.

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. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

More rogue cops in New York City, a Texas sheriff gets busted, some sticky-fingered narcs in Ohio, a would-be pot-growing cop in Florida, and yes, another prison employee busted for getting the inmates high.

5. Medical Marijuana: Four More Massachusetts Local Questions on the Ballot

For the fifth consecutive election cycle, Massachusetts marijuana reform activists are putting local public policy questions on the ballot. So far, questions regarding decriminalization, medical marijuana, industrial, and tax and regulate have a winning streak of 41-0. This year, it's four more about medical marijuana.

6. Drug Testing: Coal Miner Unions, Owners Balk at Proposed Federal Rules, But for Different Reasons

Will federally-mandated drug testing come to the coal fields? The Mine Health and Safety Administration wants it to, but workers' unions say it is unnecessary and unconstitutional.

7. Search and Seizure: Long Island Woman's Strip Search Suit Can Move Forward

A lawsuit filed by a Long Island woman who was strip searched after being busted for a marijuana stem -- with the search allegedly watched by ogling male cops via video -- can go forward, a federal appeals court has ruled.

8. Latin America: Honduran President Joins Drug Legalization Chorus

The president of Honduras has joined a growing chorus of Latin America leaders calling for drug legalization, or is it decriminalization?

9. Latin America: UNODC Head Again Blames Drugs -- Not Drug Prohibition -- for Crime and Violence

UNODC chief Antonio Maria Costa trotted out some tired old arguments last week in Mexico City as he warned of "drug crime," but ignored the role of prohibition in facilitating it.

10. Europe: British Home Secretary Announces New Marijuana Possession Penalties

Marijuana will be rescheduled as a more serious drug in Britain beginning January 26. First-time possession offenders will still get warnings, but a second offense will bring a fine, and a third offense will result in arrest. There is a loophole, but this is still a step backward for Albion.

11. Pain Treatment: Millions Suffer Unnecessarily From Lack Of Medications, Human Rights Watch Says, Drug Control Part of the Problem

Human Rights Watch has issued a new report charging that millions of people around the world are suffering needlessly from treatable pain, and international drug control laws are part of the problem.

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

"Study: Drug Czar's Billion Dollar Anti-Drug Ad Campaign is a Failure," "Another Complete Failure From the Drug Czar," "Legalizing Marijuana Would Stop Growers From Destroying Our Forests," "Drug Cop Admits His Career Was Built Around Lies and Wrongful Convictions," "Police Steal Money from Elderly Medical Marijuana Patients," "Laser-Guided Missiles Aren't the Answer," "Travel Alert: Mexico Unsafe Thanks to War on Drugs."

14. Job Opportunities: Community Organizer, Director of VIP Relations, Marijuana Policy Project

The Marijuana Policy Project has job openings in Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

15. Job Opportunity: National Coordinator, Fair Sentencing of Children, Washington, DC

The Advisory Council for the Fair Sentencing of Children, a coalition of organizations working to ending the sentencing of juveniles to life without the possibility of parole in the United States, is hiring.

16. Feedback: Do You Read Drug War Chronicle?

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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.

Drug War Chronicle #555 - October 10, 2008

1. Feature: Drug Policy and the Reform Vote in the Presidential Race

Drug reform hasn't been much of an issue in the presidential campaign, but there are differences between the major party candidates -- and much larger differences between them and a trio of minor party candidates with solidly radical drug reform proposals. For whom to vote?

2. Feature: War on Marijuana Failing Despite Drug Czar's Happy Talk, New Reports Find

In 2002, the Office of National Drug Control Policy set goals of reducing marijuana and overall drug use. Despite artful manipulation of the numbers, ONDCP has failed at its stated goal, but it has managed to drive into treatment thousands of pot smokers who didn't need it.

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. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

A Wyoming cop gets sentenced for stealing his canine officer father's training dope, a prosecutor in Indiana is in the hot seat over asset forfeiture, and another prison guard gets busted.

5. Salvia Divinorum: Massachusetts Ban Passes House

Spurred by YouTube videos and reports of increasing use, a bill that would ban salvia divinorum has passed the Massachusetts House of Representatives.

6. Medical Marijuana: Washington State Sets Supply Limits

A decade ago, Washington voters approved a medical marijuana law. Now, the state Department of Health has set quantity limits.

7. Prohibition: Cincinnati Blames Drug Shortages For Rising Violence

A cocaine shortage is leading to a wave of killings in Cincinnati. Local officials are close to making the link between prohibition and the violence, but they're not there yet.

8. Latin America: Bolivia Blocks US Anti-Drug Flights, Says It Doesn't Need or Want US Help With Coca Crop

Relations between the US and Bolivia continue to worsen. Late last week, Bolivia barred DEA surveillance planes from overflying the country, and on Saturday, President Morales scorned US anti-drug policy.

9. Latin America: Peruvian Coca Growers Push Into Indian Lands

Peruvian government efforts to crack down on coca growers in some parts of the country are causing them to expand into indigenous regions in the central Peruvian jungle. Local residents are not pleased.

10. Death Penalty: Malaysia to Hang Three for Marijuana Trafficking, Executions Continue in Middle East

In two separate cases, Malaysian courts have sentenced three men to death for trafficking less than two pounds of marijuana. Meanwhile, executions of drug offenders continue apace in the Middle East.

11. Europe: Dutch Judges Say Legalize It

Judges in the Netherlands narrowly favor legalizing marijuana, according to a new poll.

12. Press Release: Government's Drug War Test Kits Give False Positives on Organic and Natural Products

Drug testing violates personal privacy. Now, at least one widely-used drug testing kit has been proven to be a scam too.

13. Weekly: This Week in History

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

Drug War Chronicle #554 - October 3, 2008

1. Feature: Drug Policy Reform and Sentencing Initiatives on the November Ballot

Election day is just over a month away. Here's a breakdown of drug policy reform and sentencing initiatives (not all of them good) on various state and local ballots November 4.

2. Feature: Drug Reform Not on the Radar in Canada's Elections

Canadians go to the polls in national elections this month, but there has been little talk of drug reform, and two pro-reform parliamentary candidates were forced off the ballot after videos of past drug use surfaced on YouTube.

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. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Crooked policing runs the gamut this week: from a former chief of police busted for dope dealing, to a cop nailed for acting as a middleman in a bribery scheme, to some lying cops being scrutinized by a federal judge, to a crew of rogue detectives costing their employer a nice settlement, to another rogue cop who's been on the lam for the last five years.

5. Drug War Follies: Iowa Anti-Meth Pseudoephedrine Law Snags Nasal Congestion Sufferer

An Iowa man with chronic nasal congestion has run afoul of his state's law aimed at cracking down on meth cooks.

6. Public Opinion: Three-Quarters of Likely Voters Believe Drug War is Failing and More than One-Quarter Favor Legalization, Zogby Poll Finds

A poll released Thursday finds that 76% of likely voters think the drug war is failing and 27% say the solution is to legalize some drugs.

7. Sentencing: Supreme Court 2nd Amendment Decision May Provide Opening for Appeal in Case of Pot Dealer Doing 55 Years for Carrying Gun

Salt Lake City marijuana dealer Weldon Angelos got 55 years because he had a gun with him during a couple of deals and more at home. Now, in the wake of the Supreme Court's recent 2nd Amendment decision, a group of attorneys is filing a new appeal.

8. Sentencing: Pennsylvania Reform Measure Becomes Law

The biggest sentencing reforms in years were signed into law by Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell last week, but the killing of a policeman by a parolee is now blocking all parole releases.

9. Medical Marijuana: Schwarzenegger Vetoes Employment Rights Bill

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) has vetoed a bill that would have provided employment protection for medical marijuana patients.

10. Medical Marijuana: Bill Coming Down the Pike in Idaho?

An Idaho Republican state legislator is threatening to introduce a medical marijuana bill next session. That would bring the state in line with neighbors Washington, Oregon, Nevada, and Montana.

11. Latin America: Mexican President Moves to Decriminalize Drug Possession

As part of a package of security measures aimed at fighting his country's powerful drug trafficking organizations, Mexican President Felipe Calderón this week moved to decriminalize drug possession.

12. Europe: Marijuana Less Harmful Than Alcohol or Tobacco, Says British Drug Think-Tank

A British drug policy think-tank has released a report saying that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol or tobacco and should be regulated, not prohibited.

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

"Mark Souder vs. The New Drug War Politics," "Calvina Fay vs. The New Drug War Politics," "New Poll: Democrats and Republicans Agree That the Drug War is a Failure," "Police Discover World's Largest Marijuana Plants," "The Drug War Bailout," "Police Defend the Right to Choke Marijuana Suspects," "SWAT Raids Often Target Innocent People," "Nasal Congestion Sufferer Arrested for Buying Too Much Cold Medicine," "When Police Mistake Chocolate For Hash…"

15. 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.

16. 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!

17. 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.

18. 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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