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Only Two More Days to Weigh in on Washington State Medical Marijuana

The Washington state Liquor Control Board announced last week that it was extending the deadline for public comment on proposed changes to the state's existing medical marijuana program until this Wednesday, November 13. The proposed rules would remove patients' ability to grow their own, reduce the amount of medicine they could have on hand, and most likely result in the forced closing of numerous existing dispensaries.

"We have extended the deadline to submit public comment for the draft recommendations regarding medical marijuana," the board announced. "The new deadline for public comment is November 13, 2013, which coincides with the public hearing/special meeting on the subject." Submit public comment by email at [email protected], by fax at 360-664-9689 or by mailing them directly to:

Medical Marijuana
Liquor Control Board
P.O. Box 43080
Olympia, WA 98504-3080

It's probably too late to mail or Fedex a comment unless you overnight it, but the email and phone are still available.

Now is the time to speak up.

Olympia, WA
United States
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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For Phil Smith...

Hey Phillip....

Do you remember interviewing me for at least an hour during all the debates in the run-up to the voting on I-502.  I remember it pretty clearly, talking to you on my cell phone while driving over to debate Allison Holcomb four hours away in Eastern Washington.  I remember how much you wanted to believe that I-502 would work...probably because you guys sponsored it.  But we talked for a long time and you really couldn't dispute the facts and came away agreeing with me.

You can imagine how surprised, and dismayed, I was, after spending that much time answering every one of your questions....and then reading your actual article....supporting I-502 and ignoring all the issues we discussed!  I suppose you knew what I'd think about your intellectual honesty when I read that article, didn't you?  Of course you did.

Do you remember all the time we spent talking about how I-502 was a ploy to get rid of medical, and with the 85% tax on recreational, they'd change their story 180 degrees and say they HAD to get rid of medical to keep the recreational business alive?  It makes no difference that this was the opposite story they told during the election process, that pot would be so cheap the medical dispensaries couldn't compete.  It was a stupid lie, but you gave them more than enough money to sell it.

I noticed that this article is really sparse on details.  It fails to mention that these new rules will absolutely end medical cannabis in Washington.  It fails to mention that they're using the excuse that they can't compete with medical they have to throw patients under the they can make more tax revenue.  This is probably not a very good excuse for taking medicine away from dying patients and turning them into least not in an election year.  I can see why you would leave out all those gory details....that I predicted with 100% accuracy last year.  It's probably a little embarrassing for you.

Do you remember what I told you would happen with I-502?  Remember I proved to you that it couldn't possibly be implemented?  Guess hasn't!  That isn't stopping them from trying to force us into a state recreational store model, even though not one person has filled out a license application yet, let along opened a store.  You are recalling all these predictions, aren't you, Phillip?

The big prediction was that they'd force patients into the I-502 system, and then kill off the whole system because it wasn't bringing in any 2015....or sooner.

The good thing is, there are some great activists in this state and I believe we can stop them.  There are already rumors of LCB grower licenses being sold under the table for $20,000 each....lots of them.  The LCB board members may end up in Federal prison before they can deliver on a single one of these licenses.  So if we can protect medical till next year, we might just survive.  In the meantime we'll kill any bill this session that has the word "marijuana" in it. No more "Trojan Horses" for patients.

But rest assured, we will never fail to let every patient in Washington know that the Drug Policy Alliance was behind this plot from the beginning.....writing it, financing it, and selling it to the public. We won't have to remind the driver's of Washington that the cannabis DUI's have now doubled and they're are increasing at an alarming rate here.  Instead of "fixing" the law and removing the per se DUID as the sponsors promised, of course they added three more marijuana DUI's the very next legislative session.  And who's doing that?  Your buddy Rep. Roger Goodman, a prime sponsor of I-502, who also gave us a new law this year requiring alcohol interlock devices be installed on your car for marijuana related charges....with no alcohol involved whatsoever.  We'll make sure he leaves the legislature in 2014.  We're buying commercial time just for him.

I know that you know Roger "the Dodger".  He hangs out with the national "drug policy crowd", and likes his pot.  Aside from the thousands in campaign money he took from the Alcohol Interlock Lobby for "helping them out" with that crazy bill, he took another $50,000 from the medical cannabis industry in Washington.  Then four months after he was reelected, promised to put them all out of business "this year".  What a guy!  You "policy types" apparently have your own brand of honesty that many people might fail to recognize.

To be fair, the DPA wasn't the only organization that threw patients under the bus.  NORML actively worked at ending medical here in Washington, and we plan on returning the favor.  They no longer have enough dues paying members here in Washington for a good poker game after the screwing they gave us.  Then there's the ASA....who just did nothing and kept their mouths shut while patients got screwed.  So, of course, the DPA just gave Steph Sherer an award!  Her organization is totally finished here in Washington....not even a contact person listed here in Washington now.

Well I'm sure you'll take down this post, so I've saved it.  We can always put it up on our websites and blast it out everywhere.  I know how DPA and NORML and the ASA like to discourage any negative comments by simply deleting them.  So much for "free speech", right?  Not much of that in the "drug policy" community.

I just thought I'd take you down "memory lane", Phillip.  Maybe you know what's going on here right now and just don't want to take credit it, or maybe you just don't care.  The one thing you've certainly done, is prove your level of credibility, and that of the DPA.  If this comment get's deleted here, it will be all over facebook and everywhere else tomorrow.  I think people deserve to know the truth, don't you?  Maybe not.

Steve Sarich

Cannabis Action Coalition







Paranoid a bit?

Everything you say about what I-502 will do is pure speculation. You have no real evidence that what you are saying is true. Also since when was medical marijuana about running a competitive business? Medical marijuana was supposed to be about helping sick people not about running your little business that you are so afraid of losing to competition. Oh boo hoo. I don't feel bad for people like you. Your using the sick and diseased as your political beating board and I think its pathetic. People who benefit from medical marijuana all over the country are going to start benefiting from legalization. Stop being so selfish and short sited. It really is pathetic. 

Another "critic" that refuses

Another "critic" that refuses to post under their real name....or get their facts straight

Everything I predicted about I-502 is now coming true...and they certainly ARE trying to kill medical cannabis in Washington.  What makes you think that's "speculation"?  They're having a hearing tomorrow night on their proposed new rules that will wipe out medical, so where are YOU getting your information from???

I'm not worrying about "my business".  My "business" now is testifying as an expert witness in per se DUID cases for patients....and I really don't have any competition.  I'm hoping I can kill the per se DUID law and then I'll have worked by way out of THAT "business" least in Washington State.

I run the ONLY state-wide patient organization in Washington and I've spent the last ten years providing legal assistance for patients here in Washington....and I've never taken a dime for it.

I'm also the co-founder of, where we expose the corruption in government that is causing all these problems for patients.  This is a totally free resource for the cannabis community....and we pay for this out of our pockets too.

How totally selfish and short sighted of me!  And if THAT wasn't evil and selfish enough of me, this week we're launching our new project...protecting parents from abuse from Child Protective Services..

Gotta love jerks that have no idea what they're talking about, posting under assumed identities.

Steve Sarich

Cannabis Action Coalition



You are not a doctor and you

You are not a doctor and you dont know anything about drug development of the definition of medicine in this country. Learn that and then we can have a serious conversation. Your another paranoid activist who doesn't know the science and your website is proof of that and no I won't correct all your rediculous assumptions. 

No, I'm not a doctor, but I

No, I'm not a doctor, but I employ two of them and work with many others who are experts in cannabinoid therapy.  I'm also a DRE (Drug Recognition Expert) and an expert witness in court cases that deal with cannabis issues.

You've apparently diagnosed me as "paranoid"....without ever meeting me.  Now that you know my credentials, you want to tell us about your psychiatry degree?

Sounds like you're just another annoying anonymous jerk, hiding behind a screen name.  Come out, come out whoever you are...punk ass.

I personally completely fail,

I personally completely fail, how people can still talk of a legalization with the changes that are proposed with I-502.

These laws criminalize cultivating the plants, criminalize the products (hash) and last but not least the current patients that are in the system, that found their help in this medicine.

It is kind of sarcastic, when Mr "Ganja_Science" blames people bringing these problems up to use the "sick and diseased" as their beating board. This is exactly what I-502 is proposing!


Ok you both are making a very large assumption. You are making the assumption that the current state of affairs ie. pre I-502 is an ideal scenario for patients. I disagree. Now what you are saying as far as making home growing illegal and lower amounts of cannabis is totally true. Thats what the new rules propose. However what I am saying is that this will ultimately make things better for patients in the long run by expanding the quality of products available to them. Right now patients are forced to get "medicine" from what are essentially quacks. Steve you are quack. I read your website. You make un-scientific and inaccurate and flat out factually wrong statements about cannabis. I'm a scientist and you people are insanely un professional. I look forward to the day when the cannabis medical marijuana industry is run by professionals not quacks. This legislation is making that road possible. I want people all over the US to have access to medicinal cannabis and cannabinoids. The only way that is going to happen is through real scientific research and clinical studies. Not your anecdotal games and half assed attempts at research.  

You people may think you are making medicine by growing some weed in your basement for your sick neighbor. Sure when you had no alternatives I can see why that would be necessary. But real medicine has real standards in the real world. So do botanical drugs. The FDA has guidelines for this and sorry to say your basement grows pesticide spraying mess that been created in the grey area of medicinal cannabis won't fly in the real world. The faster you adapt to this the faster your patients will benefit. Until then you are fighting a losing battle and I hope you lose for the sake of patients and the legalization movement in general. 

Sounds to me like you are an apologist

for a system that wants to take out small business owners and prevent patients from growing their own plants.

When corporations and government team up to take away the rights of the disadvantaged, steal their businesses, we call that fascism.  

Plus we are in Washington state here and we know a few things about organic methods of growing...even in basements.  

Also not I don't have the

Also not I don't have the time or interest in replying to all the nonsense you people spout on a routine basis. You'll find out soon enough how this is all going to work out and why people like me are making the criticisms we are. 

Sorry I need to clarify

Sorry I need to clarify something. I am not against home growing for patients. What I am against is this insanity in the cannabis community that legalization is bad for patients. Yes patient rules are going to change. My hope is that they will change based on what the science says (its available) and not what quacks say and not what ignorant politicians say. So please excuse my blunt and aggressive comments but realize I am being very serious about criticizing some of the nonsense I see from activists. You are not looking at the bigger picture. You are always looking for a conspiracy. Its annoying. 


As a medical cannabis patient in Washington state, I am very concerned about the course of I-502. Why should I be okay with losing my local access to medical cannabis in turn for more expensive recreational pot? It is absolutely a shame that the state would neglect the efforts made by medical cannabis business owners who have worked very hard to expand the industry WITHIN the state's laws. Why should they and the patients they serve have to suffer in order for recreational cannabis to exist? As far as quality standards, there are numerous medical dispensaries that have very high standards for the cannabis that they provide to patients. As a patient, I chose to only purchase my medications from dispensaries that test all of their product, to make an assumption that all medical cannabis is dirty backyard weed is asinine. Bottom line, I-502 is not a free pass for the state liquor control board to re-write medical cannabis in Washington and disrupt the well-established medical cannabis community.

borden's picture

reality check


It goes before the legislature, which would have to make any changes to the state medical marijuana law. A knowledgeable source told me he believes that the elimination of home growing in these recommendations was the agency's attempt at a "negotiating position." Raise a stink in Washington about it to maximize our side's strength in the matter.

The larger thing going on in the government is that they don't want to have separate regulatory systems for legalization and for medical. They want to have one system, in which patients are taken care of through tax breaks for them and the businesses, establishing discounts for at least some patients as part of the regulatory regime, etc.

With all due respect, Mr. Borden...

With all due respect, Mr. Borden, you have not the slightest clue what they're up to.  We have gotten over 10,000 pages of their emails and other WE DO know what they have planned, so please don't make assumptions when you do not have the information to make an informed decision regarding what their goals are.  Law enforcement is behind this push and it has nothing to do with tax revenues or coming up with a single system for distribution.  They started planning this strategy from the time 1-502 was introduced.

If you'll recall, Mr. Borden, you supported I-502 when the sponsors clearly said that 502 would not affect medical cannabis.  You were clearly fooled by them, just as the voters were.  Clearly those that support I-502 want to believe that this is not going to end medical because that will be a little embarrassing for them.

Certainly we can prove that their "single system" would NOT take care of the needs of the patients.  Registering patients in order for them to get a 9% tax break on $40 per gram medication is not anyone's idea of a workable system for medical patients, nor would this restriction be HIPAA compliant.  

These proposed regulations were written without the consultation of a single patient or medical professional.  These meetings were held in secret in violation of the State's Open Public Meetings Act and they have already been sued over this.  Everything they've been doing is meant to avoid having to face the patients over this issue.  That's going to work for them.

You'll see us defeat this plan in January.  Patients have been pushed to the wall and they are ready to fight.  Those that supported 502 are continuing to make excuses, like saying that these are just "draft rules", but we've talked to legislators who tell a different story.  We will no be lulled into complacency.  We are fighting back and we're now a substantial voting block...and this is taking place in an election year when all of the House members and half the Senate are up for reelection.  These legislators with have a choice to make.  They're going to have to decide if pleasing the law enforcement lobby this session is worth risking the loss of their seats in the legislature.  

We now have the numbers and the financing to defeat candidates that vote to deny medicine to cancer patients and want to turn patients into criminals.  We have enough money for political commercials targeting those legislators that are targeting the patients.  And we'll start running those commercials a month before the legislative session let them know exactly how serious we are about defeating them.

We know exactly what the legislature wants, that doesn't mean they're going to get it.  You can quote me on that one!

Steve Sarich

Cannabis Action Coalition

Growing your own medical marijuana

There is increasing interest and some evidence to suggest that juicing high CBD marijuana may provide anti-inflammatory, and possibly anti-carcinogenic benefits.   It does have some side effects, though they are nothing when compared with Cis- and carbo-platin.   Because it is something a person can do for herself at very little cost, there is little interest by the pharmaceutical industry in doing studies to further this research.

As a 5 year survivor of stage 3C ovarian cancer, I want to be able to juice my own, organically-grown marijuana.  I don’t understand why the 15 plant allowance needs to be changed, except to penalize those who probably already have huge medical costs. 

While I don’t believe it to be a cure-all, as the names of the websites might lead a person to think, I do think it can help as a complementary medicine.  I include a few useful links about the subject:


For information about what our federal government has been doing to research cannabis:

Thank you for your careful consideration,


Eventually all users will be able to grow their own in WA

If the legislature won't cooperate, there will have to be another referendum. If they have the gall to take away this right from MMJ users, they'll make that day come sooner.

It's been a year now since 2 states legalized use, has cannabis impairment gotten anyone killed in WA or CO in this last year? The contrast in safety between weed and booze is huge and glaring. You have to be willfully blind not to see it. How can anyone who gives a damn about public safety and/or justice still support alcohol supremacism?

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