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Drug War Chronicle #471 - February 5, 2007

1. Feature: The Conviction That Keeps On Hurting -- Drug Offenders and Federal Benefits

For millions of drug offenders, punishment by the criminal justice is only the beginning. Drug offenders also lose access to a number of federal benefits thanks to laws a growing number of organizations are calling inhumane and counterproductive.

2. Second National Conference on Methamphetamine, HIV, and Hepatitis Underway in Salt Lake City

The 2nd National Conference on Methamphetamine, HIV and Hepatitis got underway in Salt Lake City Thursday. Here's a report from the first day.

3. Law Enforcement: Jacksonville Narcs Kill Two Men in Separate Incidents Eight Days Apart

Narcotics officers in Jacksonville, Florida, shot and killed two men in separate incidents during undercover drug operations in late January. Both men were black, neither was a drug dealer, and calls for an investigation are increasing.

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

This week, we have a prison guard busted for smuggling drugs OUT of a jail, along with more typical drug-smuggling guard cases, a teenage military policeman in trouble, a retirement age former cop busted, and another Nashville police officer found guilty of drug corruption charges.

5. Sentencing: No Relief for Louisiana's Heroin Lifers

Louisiana's "heroin lifers" got no relief from the state Supreme Court last week when it ruled a 2001 law cutting sentences did not apply retroactively. But they still have one more avenue of redress.

6. Medical Marijuana: Bills Introduced in Minnesota, Moving in New Mexico

A medical marijuana bill has been introduced for the third year in a row in Minnesota, and for the third year in a row, New Mexico advocates hope to get the bill there over the top. They're off to a fast start.

7. Methamphetamine: Epidemic, What Epidemic? Meth Use Down, SAMHSA Says

Despite the meth mania rampant in the media and among law enforcement and politicians, official numbers show meth use levels stagnant in recent years and beginning to decline in 2005.

8. Southwest Asia: British Conservatives Call for Afghan Opium to Be Licensed, Converted to Pharmaceuticals, Not Destroyed

Britain's Conservative Party has joined the call to license Afghan opium. The move comes just days after the British Medical Association called for it to be converted into diamorphine (heroin) for use by the National Health Service.

9. Weekly: This Week in History

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

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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.

Drug War Chronicle #470 - January 26, 2007

1. Editorial: Their Security Demands You Vote Repeal

Alcohol prohibition tempted young people into lives of crime back then. Drug prohibition is tempting them again the same way now.

2. Feature: In Mexico, Now It's Calderon's Drug War

Mexico's new president, Felipe Calderon, has unleashed a vigorous attack on that country's powerful and violent drug cartels. Washington is happy, but Mexico analysts wonder if it's just another bit of poltical theater.

3. Feature: Drug Policy Reform Group to Partner with State of New Mexico in Federally-Funded Meth Prevention Education Program

In a first for a drug policy reform organization, the Drug Policy Alliance's New Mexico office has been selected to administer a $500,000 federal grant to develop comprehensive methamphetamine education and prevention strategies aimed at youth in the state.

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

Prison and jail guards gone bad! Evidence gone missing! Narcs gone to prison! Busy, busy, busy.

5. Law Enforcement: SWAT Team Flash-Burn Grenade Assault Injures Drug Suspect

More SWAT team madness -- this time, Indiana cops doing a small-time drug raid manage to inflict serious burns on their man when they fired a flash-bang grenade into his home -- business as usual, according to their leader.

6. Medical Marijuana: Vermont Bill to Expand Therapeutic Use of Cannabis Advances

A compromise version of a bill that would expand Vermont's two-year-old medical marijuana law has passed its first legislative hurdle.

7. HEA: UC Berkeley Student Senate Approves Bill to Provide Scholarships for Students Denied Aid Because of Drug Convictions

The UC Berkeley student senate Wednesday night passed a measure that will provide $400 scholarships for students denied federal aid under the Higher Education Act's drug provision because they were convicted on drug charges.

8. Europe: British Cannabis Confusion Continues as Policing Policies Evolve

Amidst confusion and uncertainty among police, politicians, and citizens alike, British police announced new arrest policies for marijuana possession this week. But a study just released says police are a big part of the problem.

9. Europe: Moscow Mayor Calls for Harsh Drug Laws Including Death Penalty

Moscow's mayor called for Russia to adopt harsh, Singapore-style drug policies in a speech to Russian narcs this week.

10. Canada: Vancouver Mayor Calls for Large-Scale Methamphetamine, Cocaine Maintenance Trials

Vancouver Mayor Sam Sullivan has called for stimulant maintenance trials for more than 700 hard-core methamphetamine and cocaine users as part of a broad plan to improve the quality of life in the city before the 2010 Winter Olympics.

11. Latin America: Mexican Narco-Saint On the Move

A Mexican folk saint who supposedly protects outlaws and drug traffickers as well as the poor and defenseless has a new shrine in Mexico City.

12. This Week in History

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

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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.

Drug War Chronicle #469 - January 19, 2007

1. Feature: DEA Makes Major Move Against Los Angeles Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

The DEA was at it again Wednesday, raiding 11 medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles County, including five in West Hollywood. City council members there had only the night before introduced an ordinance to permanently regulate the dispensaries, and they aren't happy.

2. Feature: New Study Rips Canadian "Tough on Drugs" Policy, Funding

Even as Canada's Conservative government works on a tough, law enforcement-heavy new national drug strategy, a study released Monday says such approaches have failed.

3. In Memoriam: A Tribute to Aaron David Wilson, 1971-2006

An activist's short but noteworthy life sets an example for others to follow...

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

It's been relatively quiet on the corrupt cop front this week, but we've still got a Newark police officer who made a bad choice of boyfriends, and the requisite pair of crooked jail guards.

5. Law Enforcement: Florida County Will Pay for Manhandling Men in Errant Drug Bust Caught on Videotape

A video camera captured the brutality of a pair of wrongful arrests in a case of mistaken identity in Pinellas County, Florida. Now the county gets to pay up.

6. Medical Marijuana: Bills Introduced in Michigan, South Carolina, Massachusetts, Vermont and Soon in New Mexico

Medical marijuana is currently legal in 10 states, but that number could nearly double with bills already introduced in a handful of states this year.

7. Medical Marijuana: Washington State Group Raided

Local drug enforcement agents raided the offices of CannaCare, an Everett, Washington, medical marijuana support and advocacy group this week, accusing of it providing marijuana to patients.

8. Marijuana: Decriminalization Bills Filed in Massachusetts, New Hampshire

No marijuana decriminalization bill has passed since the 1970s, but legislators in Massachusetts and New Hampshire are ready to try this year.

9. Treatment Not Jail: California Governor Proposes Cutting Proposition 36 Drug Treatment Funds

In his new state budget, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has under-funded for the popular and successful treatment-not-jail program Proposition 36. He's in for a fight.

10. Europe: Scottish Labor Politician Fights for Harm Reduction as Party Turns Hard-Line on Drugs

The Scottish drug debate heated up this week as a Labor Party MSP attacked her party for heading in the wrong direction, and more than 250 senior police, health officials, academics, and others interested in drug policy pondered the future.

11. Weekly: This Week in History

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

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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.

Drug War Chronicle #468 - January 12, 2007

1. Editorial: Newark Deserves Better From Its Leaders

A new anti-drug department in New Jersey's largest city will bring everything the mayor and police chief say they don't want.

2. Feature: More Cops Died Directing Traffic Than Waging the Drug War Last Year

Police portray themselves as up against dangerous criminals as they fight the war on drugs, but you might be surprised...

3. Law Enforcement: DEA Lax on Handling Seized Cash, Audit Finds

DEA agents seize hundreds of millions of dollars a year in drug busts, but a Justice Department audit finds the agency is pretty lax in its handling of all that cash.

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

Hiding marijuana inside cannoli, taking cocaine from a murder scene, and peddling cocaine are all on the radar this week. So is an investigation into drug smuggling at a US Air Force base in England.

5. Law Enforcement: Faced With Rising Murder Rates, Newark and New Orleans Turn to Repressive Drug War Strategies

Faced with rising crime and murder rates, city officials in Newark and New Orleans are blaming drugs and using more of the same old same old to try to crack down.

6. Law Enforcement: Small-Time Drug Possessors No Longer Charged as Felons in Wichita -- Cops Grumble

Police in Wichita are no longer charging small-time hard drug possession as a felony -- less than a quarter-gram of meth or coke, and all you get is a misdemeanor paraphernalia charge, and you don't even go to jail!

7. Law Enforcement: Woman Arrested Over Flour-Filled Condom Wins $180,000 in Suit Settlement

Bryn Mawr coeds apparently liked to squeeze condoms filled with flour to fend off stress over final exams, but when one student tried to take one home for the holidays, she ended in jail for three weeks charged as a drug trafficker. Now the city of Philadelphia gets to pay for its mistake.

8. Medical Marijuana: Colorado Case Will Test State's Law

The arrest of a pair of registered Colorado medical marijuana patients last fall is setting off a legal battle that will help clarify the state's medical marijuana law. But if they lose, they face up to six years in prison.

9. Newsbrief: White House Announces Dates, Locations for 2007 Regional Student Drug Testing Summits

The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy will once again sponsor a series of regional summits to encourage middle-school and high-school administrators to enact federally sponsored random student drug testing -- but you can go too.

10. Latin America: Mexico Considering Creation of "Drug Czar" Post

Early in his presidential term, Mexican leader Felipe Calderon has already called out the army to fight drug traffickers. Now, his government is pondering the creation of a "drug czar" to coordinate the fight.

11. Europe: European Union Funds Dialogue With Civil Society on Drug Policies

The European Parliament has budgeted $1.3 million to promote a dialog with civil society over its continent-wide drug policy review set for next year.

12. Weekly: This Week in History

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

13. Web Scan

Colbert Report, Tyrone Brown Support Letters, The Nation, In These Times, NCCD, Tasers, Drug Truth Network, Cannabinoid Chronicles, DOJ Study

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16. Job Listing: Outreach Director Position Available at Students for Sensible Drug Policy, Washington, DC

A great opportunity to work with students building the drug policy reform movement.

17. Job Listing: Program Coordinator, Public Health Program, OSI-Budapest

Work on harm reduction in Hungary!

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

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 #467 - January 5, 2007

1. Editorial: Raid vs. Raid

Our soldiers under insurgent threat in Baghdad seem more clear-headed than our police serving routine search warrants here at home.

2. Feature: Afghan Opium Dilemma Sparks New Calls for Alternative Development, "Normalizing" the Poppy Crop

While the US using tried-and-failed eradication schemes on the Afghan opium trade, others including the UN and World Bank are calling for smarter alternative development. Others are going even further.

3. Hemp: DEA Has Spent $175 Million Eradicating "Ditch Weed" Plants That Don't Get You High

The DEA has spent $175 million in the past two decades to eradicate "ditch weed" plants that don't get anybody high. Your tax dollars at work.

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5. Resource: Screening Kit Now Available for "Waiting to Inhale" Video

You can organize and get the word out by hosting a screening -- small or large -- of this important video about medical marijuana.

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

Continuing fall-out from the Henry County, Virginia, sheriff's office bust in October, another Tennessee cop running interference for drug dealers, a long-time fugitive INS officer caught, and, of course, a couple more jail guards bringing goodies to the prisoners.

7. Marijuana: Judge Throws Out Religious Defense in Arizona Marijuana Case, Says Defendants Lack "Sincere" Belief

The leaders of a religious group arguing that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act protects them from prosecution under the federal marijuana laws were shot down in federal court when the judge ruled their beliefs were not "sincere."

8. Medical Marijuana: California's Booming Market Offers Substantial Tax Revenues, Report Finds

The California medical marijuana market could be a substantial source of tax revenues for the state, according to a new study, but it isn't happening yet.

9. Drug Prohibition: Vermont Prosecutor Calls for "Peace Talks" in War on Drugs, Consideration of Public Health Approach

A Vermont prosecutor is calling for "peace talks" in the war on drugs. It is time to debate alternative approaches, he says.

10. Latin America: Colombian Senator Calls for Drug Legalization Debate

A Colombian senator is calling for a debate on legalizing the drug trade. His father, a leading presidential candidate, was assassinated by Medellin Cartel hit men in 1990.

11. Latin America: Mexican Soldiers Occupy Tijuana in Fight Against Drug Trade

Mexican President Felipe Calderon has sent thousands of soldiers and federal police into Tijuana in a bid to stamp out the drug trade in the border city where more than 300 died in prohibition-related violence last year.

12. Europe: Support for Marijuana Legalization Low

A survey conducted by the European Commission finds low levels of support for marijuana legalization in Europe. The Netherlands and Spain poll highest.

13. Weekly: This Week in History

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

14. Announcement: DRCNet RSS Feeds Now Available

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15. Job Listing: Communications Associate, Justice Policy Institute, Washington, DC

The Justice Policy Institute is looking for a new Communications Associate.

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

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 #466 - December 22, 2006

1. It Was the Best of Times: Drug Reform Victories and Advances in 2006

As 2006 comes to an end, we look back to find the most significant victories and advances for drug reform this year.

2. It Was the Worst of Times: Drug Reform Defeats, Downers, and Disappointments in 2006

As 2006 comes to a close, we look back at the year's biggest drug reform defeats, disappointments, and downers.

3. Feature: Marijuana is America's Number One Cash Crop, Study Finds

A new study using federal government statistics and conservative estimates illustrates the extreme failure of prohibitionist policies.

4. Organization News: DRCNet Hits This Week

TV and a prominent link help us take the message to wider audiences this week.

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

A Virginia drug-fighter gets caught selling drugs, so does a former NYPD cop, and yet another jail guard goes down. Also, an interesting update on Operation Lively Green.

6. Harm Reduction: New Jersey Governor Signs Needle Exchange Bill

New Jersey Gov. John Corzine (D) quickly signed the needle exchange passed by the state Assembly last week. Now, up to six Garden State cities may begin pilot programs.

7. Harm Reduction: Experts Call for Urgent Action as Fentanyl-Related Overdose Death Toll Climbs

More than 120 medical experts, public health departments, and drug user advocacy groups have signed on to a letter urging Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt to take aggressive action to stem a wave of fatal overdoses related to heroin cut with the synthetic opiate fentanyl.

8. Latin America: Peruvian President Lauds Coca Leaf in Salad, Blasts Guerrillas

Peruvian President Alan Garcia asks for the death penalty for terrorism after Shining Path guerillas attack police and anti-drug workers trying to wipe out illicit coca crops. The following day, he says coca is great in salads.

9. South Pacific: Australia Wants to Ban the Bong

As Australia shivers through a fit of Reefer Madness, the government of Prime Minister John Howard says it wants to ban bongs.

10. Web Scan

Balko at Reason, Dems and Sentencing, Barr the Libertarian, Another Top Ten Set

11. Weekly: This Week in History

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

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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.

Drug War Chronicle #465 - December 15, 2006

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1. Editorial: Could It Be More Clear?

It's time to make just and rational sentencing a litmus test of basic morality.

2. Feature: New Jersey Legislature Approves Needle Exchange Bill, Governor Will Sign

The last holdout state in the needle exchange battles has now enacted legislation legalizing the programs.

3. Feature: Clamor Grows for Freedom for Texas Marijuana Prisoner Tyrone Brown

Tyrone Brown violated probation as a 17-year-old by smoking marijuana, and was sentenced to life in prison for it. He's still there, but maybe not for long.

4. Feature: Belgian Bud Brouhaha Unfolds as Antwerp's First Open Marijuana Garden Gets Busted Before Beginning

A Belgian marijuana consumer group used a Tuesday press conference to announce its collective garden, but police had other ideas.

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

This week's edition of corrupt cops stories is heavy on the dope-dealing prison guards. Not to worry, though, there's more.

6. Medical Marijuana: Eddy Lepp Wins a Battle

The DEA seized more than 30,000 plants from Eddy Lepp in 2004, calling it their biggest cultivation bust ever, but a judge this week threw out the evidence. Lepp has more battles ahead.

7. Southwest Asia: US Drug Czar Announces Afghanistan Will Spray Opium Poppies

With Afghan opium production going through the roof, US drug czar John Walters announced Saturday that the Afghan government would begin using herbicides to eradicate the poppy crop. But the Afghan government hasn't officially agreed yet.

8. Bad Science: Congress Passes Measure Okaying Mycoherbicide Testing, But Limits It to US Labs

Congress has passed a measure that will allow for the testing of potentially dangerous mycoherbicides to be used to destroy illicit drug crops. But in a victory for reformers, the okay will be limited to labs in the US -- not fields in Latin America.

9. Methamphetamine: DEA to Create National Lab Site Registry

The DEA jumped on the meth registry bandwagon last week, with a twist.

10. Addiction Treatment: Congress Allows Certified Physicians to Take On More Buprenorphine Patients

Congress last Friday moved to expand the number of patients certified physicians can treat with buprenorphine for opiate addiction. This is the second increase in two years.

11. East Asia: Reefer Madness Snares Taiwan Celebrities

Some Taiwanese celebrities are getting unwanted attention these days as police pursue allegations that they -- gasp! -- smoked marijuana.

12. Weekly: This Week in History

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

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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.

Drug War Chronicle #464 - December 8, 2006

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1. Drug Reform and the Democratic Congress: What's Going to Happen?

Will Democratic control of the Congress mean significant drug reform progress next year? Drug reformers certainly hope so, but the prospects are uncertain.

2. DRCNet Book Review: "Fatal Distraction: The War on Drugs in the Age of Islamic Terror," by Arnold Trebach (2006, Unlimited Publishing, 398 pp., $19.95 PB)

Arnold Trebach, the dean of American drug reform, is at it again with the publication of his latest book, "Fatal Distraction: The War on Drugs in the Age of Islamic Terror."

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

After a one-week hiatus, the corrupt cops stories are back, thanks in large part to the help of Chronicle readers -- we have a veritable potpourri of police misconduct with a heavy emphasis on the larcenous.

6. Sentencing: US Supreme Court Rules for Immigrants in Drug Possession Deportation Case

In a Tuesday decision, the US Supreme Court ruled that immigrants convicted of drug felonies under state law are not subject to mandatory deportation unless the offense is classified as a felony under the federal Controlled Substances Act.

7. Sentencing: US Supreme Court Lets Stand Pot Dealer's 55-Year Mandatory Minimum Sentence

Observers had hoped the court would use the case to address the excesses of mandatory minimum sentences, but no such luck.

8. Pain Patients: Richard Paey Loses Appeal, Wheelchair-Bound Man to Remain in Prison

Richard Paey, the wheelchair-bound pain patient serving a 25-year mandatory minimum sentence as a drug dealer under Florida law, will remain in prison after losing an appeal this week. But a sympathetic appeals court suggested he seek clemency from the governor.

9. Hemp: North Dakota Becomes First State to Legalize Industrial Production

North Dakota becomes the first state to legalize industrial hemp production, with licenses available beginning January 1. But someone is going to have to do something about the DEA's opposition, or nobody's going to be growing hemp any time soon.

10. Medical Marijuana: County Lawsuit Challenging California Law Thrown Out

Officials of San Diego, Merced and San Bernardino counties who are hostile to California's medical marijuana law lost a court battle.

11. Harm Reduction: New Jersey Needle Exchange Bill Moves to Final Floor Votes Next Week

New Jersey is the only state in the nation with neither needle exchange nor non-prescription needle sales, but that could change Monday as a needle exchange bill heads for final floor votes in both houses of the legislature.

12. Law Enforcement: Rev. Al Sharpton Calls for Congressional Hearings into Police Killings of Civilians

In the wake of a trio of high-profile police killings of civilians, African-American civil rights activist the Rev. Al Sharpton is calling for congressional hearings on police violence.

13. Weekly: This Week in History

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

14. Job Opportunity: MPP New Hampshire Medical Marijuana Campaign

Granite Staters for Medical Marijiuana is back, and they may want YOU.

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

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 #463 - December 1, 2006

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1. Feature: World Bank-UN Report Offers Grim Assessment of Afghanistan Opium Battle, Says Winning Will Take Decades, Not Years

A new report from the World Bank and UN is just the latest to warn of the difficulties facing drug warriors in Afghanistan. The report is comprehensive, exacting, and grim.

2. Feature: Medical Marijuana Gets a Hearing in Michigan

Medical marijuana came to the state legislature in Michigan this week, for the first time -- and made an unexpectedly strong showing.

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5. Sentencing: Correctional Supervision At All-Time High With Over Seven Million People Tied to the System

In its latest annual studies on the prison and probation/parole population in the US, the Bureau of Justice Statistics reports the numbers are at an all-time high. Again.

6. Search and Seizure: US Supreme Court Lets State Rulings Barring Drug Dog House Searches and Restricting Traffic Stop Drug Searches Stand

The US Supreme Court Monday refused to hear appeals of state court decisions limiting law enforcement's ability to conduct searches in two states.

7. Drug Raids: Cops Looking Worse and Worse as Facts Emerge in Deadly Atlanta Case

The killing of an elderly Atlanta woman in a drug raid last week continues to reverbrate through the community. With each passing day, the police are looking worse.

8. Medical Marijuana: California Supreme Court Rules Patients Can Transport It

The California Supreme Court has ruled that qualified medical marijuana patients can transport their medicine -- as much as they need -- without being subjected to arrest and conviction.

9. Marijuana: Lowest Priority Initiatives Coming to Maine

Maine could become the next state where municipalities pass a lowest law enforcement priority marijuana initiative. Activists there have the process well under way already.

10. Legalization: Vermont States Attorney Calls for Decriminalization of All Drugs

A Vermont states attorney has spoken out publicly against the drug war. All drugs should be "decriminalized" and drug abuse considered as a public health issue, he says.

11. Marijuana: Michigan Legalization Initiative Gets State Okay to Gather Signatures for 2008

A Michigan group has won approval from the State Board of Canvassers to begin a signature gathering drive for an initiative that would legalize the possession of marijuana by adults.

12. Southeast Asia: New Thai Government to Begin Investigating 2,500 Murders Committed During Thaksin's Drug War

While he was Thai Prime Minister, Thaksin Shinawatra unleashed a drug war in which more than 2,500 were killed. Now that he has been deposed, the new government is promising to investigate the murders.

13. Southeast Asia: Myanmar Military Turns Blind Eye to Allied Ethnic Militias' Opium Trade

The military junta in Myanmar has been crowing about how it's cooperating in the fight against opium production, but a report from the Shan States suggests the military is turning a blind eye to production and trading by allied ethnic militias.

14. Press Release: World AIDS Day: Advocates Call to Lift Federal Ban on Syringe Exchange - Take Politics Out of HIV Prevention

Harm reduction advocates are looking to the new Congress with hope.

15. Weekly: This Week in History

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

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

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 #462 - November 24, 2006

1. Editorial: Things That Happen Over and Over

People are getting killed in reckless drug raids, and all the president can do is pardon some turkeys.

2. Feature: Students Lobby and Learn in DC as SSDP Comes to Town

Students for Sensible Drug Policy held its annual conference in Washington, DC, last weekend. Here's our report.

3. Canada: BC Business-Academic Panel Tells Government to Consider Legalizing Drugs

A blue ribbon panel says to either legalize drugs or really crack down with the goal of wiping them out.

4. Racial Profiling: It Never Went Away on the New Jersey Turnpike

As New Jersey's governor ponders whether to continue a consent decree designed to eliminate racial profiling by State Police, the ACLU says the problem is worse than ever.

5. Drug Raids: Atlanta Police Kill Woman, 92, Who Shot Invading Officers

Three undercover police officers serving a no-knock drug seach warrant in Atlanta were hit by gunfire from the 92-year old homeowner before they shot and killed her.

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

A couple of unusual ones this week -- a coke-dealing former fire chief in Connecticut and a Texas cop whose wife has a bad passport and some very shady connections.

7. Sentencing: Veteran Houston Judge Calls for Shorter Sentences for Drug Possession

Houston (Harris County) accounts for nearly 40% of all Texas prisoners serving state jail time for drug possession offenses. Now, a conservative Houston jurist says enough is enough.

8. Marijuana: San Francisco Supervisors Approve Lowest Law Enforcement Priority Policy

San Francisco became the latest in a growing list of cities taking the lead in reforming marijuana policies.

9. Europe: Italian Government Loosens Marijuana Possession Limits

An administrative measure last week doubled the amount of marijuana people can possess without facing criminal charges.

10. Europe: Give Addicts Prescription Heroin, Says British Police Commander

As Britain's top cops meet to discuss drug policy, one police commander is saying the government should provide prescription heroin to addicts.

11. Harm Reduction: Yet Another Study Finds Vancouver's Safe Injection Site Benefits Users Without Harming Community

Canadian Prime Minister Steven Harper doesn't like safe injection sites, but as yet another study shows, science is not on his side.

12. Europe: British Drug Expert Calls for Downgrade on LSD, Ecstasy

The head of the British Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs has called for ecstasy and LSD to be reclassified as less serious drugs, but the government has signalled it isn't listening.

13. Video Offer: Waiting to Inhale

This important new documentary about the medical marijuana movement is DRCNet's latest membership premium.

14. Web Scan

Too many this week to list...

15. Weekly: This Week in History

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

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

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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