Because of the power vested in the EU Commission in Brussels, Belgium, with command over a space encompassing 27 nations with more than 500 million citizens and the largest nominal world gross domestic product (GDP) of 18 trillion US dollars, it’s perhaps no surprise in this era of moral promiscuity that powerful private lobby groups such as the tobacco industry, the drug lobby, the agribusiness lobby and countless others spend enormous sums of money and other favors—legal and sometimes illegal—to influence policy decisions of the EU Commission.
Subtitle: How to age quickly and retire early from a life of Activism in Cannabis – via the DEA
Subtitle: How to become a criminal vs. a patient in need of their medication…
ShereeKrider; May 7th, 2015
I really hate writing about myself. I rarely do and when I do it is for a reason. I have no other choice but to tell the story as it happened – and unfortunately it happened to me, although you could say that I have set myself up for “martyrdom” by being involved with Activism in any aspect which has to do with Cannabis. That is my sin – I smoke Cannabis. I know that it helps my anxiety but I also knew that Cannabis alone most likely would not be able to handle my “condition” and that it was “illegal” to use. O.K., that much is fact.
In 1979 I was diagnosed with Chronic Major Depression, Dysthymia, and Acute Anxiety. This is no secret as I have not tried to hide the fact that I suffer from this condition.
Skip forward to 1990 when I finally was placed with a Psychiatrist that was very knowledgeable in his field and I took to him quickly. I was glad to have someone that knew more than I did prescribing my medication.
I never hid the fact that I worked as an Activist with the USMjParty from him. I never hid the fact that I used Cannabis from him.
I left a pain clinic in 2003 where I tested positive for THC and the only medication they would prescribe at that point was Methadone which I had ironically enough just been able to detox myself from and was not taking anymore. Hence, my reason for leaving.
My Psychiatrist, Dr. Theodore B. Feldman who works for U of L Psychiatric in Louisville Kentucky told me at that time that I did not have to worry about obtaining my medicine from him because he would never hold the THC against me. My main two medicines were Zoloft and Xanax. I had been tried on a multitude of drugs but this is what worked for me and I have been using the same medication since 1986. He even filled out a form which is seen below, to send back to the pain doctors saying there wasn’t a reason to withhold my pain medication because of THC.
Dr. Feldman is responsible for all aspects of the psychiatry curriculum during the four years of medical school. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Cincinnati and his medical degree from the University of Louisville. He completed his psychiatric residency training at the University of Cincinnati and received additional training at the Chicago Institute for psychoanalysis and Cincinnati Psychoanalytic Institute. Dr. Feldman received his board certification in psychiatry in 1986 and in forensic psychiatry in 1996. His clinical activities include general adult psychiatry, long-term intensive psychotherapy, and forensic psychiatry. He has been the principle investigator on research activities related to workplace violence and hostage and barricade incidents. Dr. Feldman serves as an expert witness in civil and criminal cases in state and federal courts. He is a psychiatric consultant to the Federal Bureau of Investigation which includes consultation in hostage situations, training of hostage negotiators, and psychological profiling of offenders. Dr. Feldman serves as a consultant to the Baldwin County (GA) Victim Assistance Program and to the Louisville Metro/Jefferson County (KY) Police Crisis Negotiation Team. He has published numerous scientific papers and serves as a peer reviewer for a variety of regional and national publications. In addition to his clinical service, Dr. Feldman supervises and lectures to medical students and psychiatry residents on topics related to psychiatric assessment, personality disorders and psychotherapy.
I had also been told by Dr. Feldman not to worry if I could not get to an appointment – I could reschedule. The problem was that when I rescheduled he was always booked three to six months at a time so it could be hard for me to get in.
The first part of April this year I called in to get an appointment. I had missed two previous, one because of weather and one because of taking my (ex)husband to an important heart cath appointment here in Glasgow. When I called in I was told that I was NO LONGER A PATIENT OF DR. FELDMAN THAT I HAD BEEN DISMISSED FOR MISSED APPOINTMENT AND A PAST DUE BALANCE WHICH WASN’T PAID OFF. I never received a letter to this effect from either Dr. Feldman, nor the office of the U of L Psychiatric Clinic. I was told nothing until the day I called in for an appointment. After much adieu the clinic called in my Zoloft and Xanax for one more month. I needed them filled again by the first of May.
This is where I will go backwards a little bit. I had also been a patient of Dr. Chandra Reddy here in Cave City.
He had been my primary doctor since I moved here in 2011. He had filled my medications as needed for the most part – until I was caught by a drug test by him back in 2014. At about that same time, in July of 2014 Dr. Reddy, himself, was found to be trading scripts for marijuana! Kentucky.com reported the following on July 7th, 2014:
According to last week’s order restricting Reddy from prescribing controlled substances, Berry said patients would call for narcotic prescriptions without coming to the office. She also claimed to have a sexual relationship with her married boss and to have traded cash and prescription narcotics for marijuana for his use.
The end of this scenario with Dr. Chandra Reddy is that he is now back in his office practicing medicine after having had these charges against him and he had admitted to smoking marijuana as well.
Now, I move forward to current time. The Physician I went to after Dr. Reddy was out of business was located in Glasgow. I was referred to him by T.J. Samson Hospital approximately six months ago.
I will not use his name because he is currently still my physician. He has done no wrong. He is just doing what he has to do to keep his license. When H.B. 1 was passed in January of this year all the Physicians who were already on edge, increased their drug testing and removal of patients who smoked Cannabis, because the new laws just served to create a free fall for all Medical Cannabis user’s. We were immediately pegged because of drug testing in the Doctor’s office which is how I came to be in this situation to begin with.
When I went to my current Physician in Glasgow they got me with a drug test. I was positive for THC and he could no longer prescribe me “scheduled narcotics” – which would include the medicine I need the most to survive in this chaotic world I live in, Xanax.
Do to the fact I thought ahead and always kept an extra few weeks of medicine put back in case of emergency, which I think this definitely qualifies as an emergency, I am able to sit here today and write the story of what is happening to me.
The only thing my current Physician could do is refer me to a new Psychiatrist in Bowling Green for which my appointment is not until September!
It is documented fact that after being on this medication for so many years, my age, my heart conditions and anxiety, I could die from withdrawals. So therefore they know that that withdrawal will force me into a hospital for treatment (I’ve never had to be hospitalized for my condition before) and force me to “retire” from Activism all together – get me out of their way, an activist “culling” of sorts, and I damn well know that it is not just me that is being hung by the neck in this scenario. It has to be playing out with many people – all Cannabis user’s. In all areas of the Country. It is just particularly bad in Kentucky — and my name is Sheree Krider.
So effectively I have been given a death sentence by our Government and Health Care System. If I do not become a criminal and find Xanax on the “street”, it is quite likely I may end up dead – or worse.
They have judiciously made me into a criminal for being ill and speaking out for something I believe in and not trying to hide the fact. I was, in fact, very naïve to think that I could trust any Doctor – even Dr. Feldman who I felt I could be truthful with, after twenty-four years, kicked me out like an old rag. Due to the fact that he is involved in Forensics I have to ask myself why I ever felt I could trust him. These people are good at what they do. And they damn well know EXACTLY what they are doing to me.
Let my scenario be your warning! The legalization movement is truly a war. And they are going to keep knocking us down every time we think we are getting a step up. The Activists who are in my age range are particularly vulnerable because of other healthcare issues. Legalize, tax and regulate as a form of control is not going to change this scenario. Only true repeal of the prohibition of this plant would do us any good now. Yes, you can “legalize” a schedule II Cannabis drug that will give the plant to the Pharmaceutical Companies to patent, and prescribe to patients…But you will never be able to grow a plant in your yard for your own use. You will have to have a RX in order to get this medication and it will come straight through the FDA and DEA and don’t get caught with someone else’s “Cannabis RX” in your pocket!
I just cannot figure out how a Doctor can be sanctioned for bartering RX’s for Marijuana and be back in business within six months and I am a patient, half dead already, and cannot get my mental health medication filled because I smoke Marijuana ?????
That’s it, and that’s that.
All the years of hard work by Activists to free a plant are quickly going to Hell in a Hand Basket. So enjoy while you can.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY AUNT RUBY!
Joseph Gerth, The Courier-Journal 8:45 a.m. EST December 17, 2014
A Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife officer killed a mountain lion on a Bourbon County farm on Monday, marking the first confirmed sighting of a mountain lion in Kentucky since before the Civil War, said Mark Marraccini, a spokesman for the agency.
Marraccini said a farmer spotted the cat in a tree and alerted the department. When the officer responded, he found the animal had been trapped in different tree by a barking dog and decided it was best to “dispatch it.”
Mountain lions were once native to Kentucky but they were killed off here more than a century ago, Marraccini said.
Mountain lions are the largest cats found in North America and can measure up to eight feet from nose to tail and weigh up to 180 pounds. Also known as cougars, pumas, panthers and catamounts, the cats are considered top-line predators because no other species feed on them.
Marraccini said the wildlife officer shot the cat because it was about 5:30 p.m. and getting dark and he feared that it would slip away in darkness and threaten people in the nearby city of Paris.
“If that cat had left that tree, it would have disappeared into the brush and it was a fairly populated area,” said Marraccini, who said it would have taken several hours and dark before a state veterinarian could retrieve the tranquilizer from her safe and get it to the scene had officials taken that route.
“It sounds good but it’s pretty impractical,” said Marraccini, who said the officer who shot the cat made the right call.
“That’s the way the officers deemed to handle it and I don’t see any reason why it shouldn’t be handled that way,” he said.
Marraccini said a state veterinarian will conduct a necropsy on the cat Tuesday to determine if it is a wild cat or a former pet that was either released or escaped.
According to the Cougar Network, the cat is mostly confined to the western United States but is advancing east. For years, the Mississippi River has been thought to be a barrier to the mountain lion’s eastern expansion. But its clear they have been getting close to Kentucky.
They have colonized in South Dakota, Nebraska and Missouri, said Amy Rodrigues, a staff biologist for the Mountain Lion Foundation, and there have been sightings in recent years in Indiana and even downtown Chicago.
Rodrigues said that mountain lions each need more than 100 square miles to survive and many of the animals being killed as they expand east are young males under the age of two that have been kicked out by their mothers. They often travel east looking for deer, water and female cougars.
But Rodrigues said states that kill the animals when they enter are wrong for doing it and that the animals shouldn’t cause fear. “If you’re a deer, they’re a little dangerous. If you’re a human, not so much,” she said. “Attacks on people are not that common. There have only been 22 deaths in the last 120 years.”
They get a bad rap because “they are large animals with sharp teeth,” Rodrigues said.
She added the presence of mountain lions in an ecosystem adds to biological diversity, which she said helps the environment recover from natural disaster and diseases that affect the fauna in a region.
Mark Dowling, a director of the Cougar Network, which advocates for the use of science to understand the animals, said the population was being pushed further and further west until the 1960s when a number of western and midwestern states began to classify them as game animals rather than vermin, and limiting people’s right to kill them.
Since then, he said, the cats have been slowly reclaiming their old turf.
Marraccini said there is no official protocol about how to handle more mountain lions if they are found in Kentucky but he doubts that they will be allowed to colonize here like they have in many western states.
“Every one of them is handled on it’s own,” said Marraccini.
Marraccini said that people and legislators probably would be opposed to allowing the cats to stay in the state. “When you have a population essentially that has had generations and generations and generations that have not had top-line predators, you think about it. You going to let your kids wait for the school bus in the dark? …”
“From a wildlife diversity perspective, it would be a neat thing but from a social aspect, probably not,” he said.
Dowling wouldn’t take a position on whether the cat should have been killed but said that most states that have had the cats moving through them have just left the cats alone. In fact, he said he can’t think of a state wildlife agency that shoots them on sight but he noted that South Dakota will shoot them when they enter a city.
But he said human attacks are few and far between, even in California where there are thousands of the cats, some of them living within large cities like Los Angeles.
“It’s very, very rare for them to show any aggression toward humans,” he said. “They, in fact, have a fear of people.”
Animals like the mountain lion once near extinction or limited in their range are rebounding across the country. The first gray wolf confirmed in Kentucky in generations was shot by a hunter a year and a half ago near Munfordville.
In My Opinion
1/24/2014 8:35:49 PM
Make no mistake about it we are at war within our own country. In fact the whole world is at war with each other. Furthermore we have been at war in
Make no mistake about it we are at war within our own country. In fact the whole damn world is at war with each other.
Furthermore, we have been at war in our own country since the arrival of the Mayflower. But for this opinion I will only go back as far as September 11, 2001. The day the world changed forever for the citizens of the United States.
When the attack on the World Trade Center’s occurred on that day, we all assumed that it was a foreign entity which had cursed us with that attack. There are doubts about that scenario now. But it really does not matter what “entity” commanded that the attack take place. It only matters that it did and how it changed our perception of reality forever.
We were in shock. We were taken advantage of. We were misguided and conveniently suppressed of information. That information was the truth about what was about to happen us in the following ten years. In those years following we have become increasingly more oppressed and depressed as a general population.
We are becoming desperate as can be seen in the uprisings around the world, a general displeasure of the people can be seen across all countries, races, ethnic groups, civil rights advocates, and last but not least the OCCUPY movement which has went around the world. Violence is ever increasing.
The laws are ever changing and becoming more invasive of our private lives. Censorship and video surveillance have become the norm of our lives and freedom of speech although seemingly rampant and ongoing at the present online will meet its maker with passage of new laws to censor our every move across the World Wide Web.
“As if they haven’t been tracking us for the past ten years anyway”…
Like an owl swooping down on his prey, in the name of security we have lost almost all of our rights as U.S. Citizens. The Constitution is becoming nothing more than a historical document to put in a museum.
What happened to “government of the people, by the people and for the people”? It has become a plutocracy, “of the rich, by the rich, and for the rich”. How do we win this war? We won’t. They are smarter than us. We have proven that already by buying into the surveillance of virtually every moment of our daily lives via face book and other social networks. All of this technology came about for our convenience and we were naïve enough to carry it in through our front doors and even into our bedrooms. We are all walking tracking devices in one form or another or even multiple ways.
Who is running the government? We do not really know. Where did all the money go? We do not really know. Who ordered the attack on the World Trade Center’s? We don’t really know. Who can we trust? We do not know. Can you trust your bank? Can you trust your doctor or the pharmaceutical company that makes the real snake oil of this millennium? Probably not. If you can, you are one of the lucky few.
So now that we have spent the last 40 odd years protesting for one thing or another and all the faith, hope and respect has faded in the grave what do we do now? We have effectively completed their mission for them by creating the very thing that they needed to invoke “security for the country”. Do we have a voice? Yes. Do they hear us? Yes. Do they care what we think? Absolutely not. They are into their own agenda of the NWO and that is all there is to it. There is no stopping the bastards. They have more money, more “security forces” conveniently brainwashed into their agenda, and a lot more bullets than we, the people, could ever come up with. It would be another bloody civil war that would make the last one look like a walk in the park. They have us lock, stock and barrel.
You may argue the point that we still have our voting rights. And that would be a valid point. However, for some unknown reason most of the country still chooses not to exercise that right. The vote hasn’t been legitimate for many years and ignorance is or at least was bliss. It isn’t anymore.
So plant your gardens. Stock up on necessities as much as you can. And make an “escape” plan, (with an alternate plan “B”) just in case chaos breaks out near you. That is providing martial law hasn’t been invoked yet and your neighborhood isn’t staked off.
Say your prayers and ask forgiveness for your sins. Plan for the worst and hope and pray for the best.
Then just sit back, relax and watch what happens.
“We know you can see us”
The case to ban fracking grows stronger every day. Fracking is short for hydraulic fracturing. It’s a water-intensive process where millions of gallons of fluid — a mix of water, sand, and chemicals, including ones known to cause cancer — are injected underground at high pressure to fracture the rock surrounding an oil or gas well. This releases extra oil and gas from the rock, so it can flow into the well.
But the process of fracking introduces additional industrial activity into communities beyond the well. Clearing land to build new access roads and new well sites, drilling and encasing the well, fracking the well and generating the waste, trucking in heavy equipment and materials and trucking out the vast amounts of toxic waste — all of these steps contribute to air and water pollution risks and devaluation of land that are turning our communities into sacrifice zones. Fracking threatens the air we breathe, the water we drink, the communities we love and the climate on which we all depend. That’s why over 250 communities in the U.S. have passed resolutions to stop fracking, and why Vermont, France and Bulgaria have stopped it.
Why a Ban? Can Regulations Make Fracking Safe?
Ban Fracking in Your Area
No. Fracking is inherently unsafe and we cannot rely on regulation to protect communities’ water, air and public health. The industry enjoys exemptions from key federal legislation protecting our air and water, thanks to aggressive lobbying and cozy relationships with our federal decision makers (the exemption from the Safe Drinking Water Act is often referred to as the Cheney or Halliburton Loophole, because it was negotiated by then-Vice President Dick Cheney with Congress in 2005). Plus, the industry is aggressively clamping down on local and state efforts to regulate fracking by buying influence and even bringing lawsuits to stop them from being implemented. That’s why fracking can’t be made safe through government oversight or regulations. An all out ban on fracking is the only way to protect our communities.
- How much do you know about fracking? Take our quiz!
- Get the facts about fracking and why we need a ban in our Ban Fracking Now fact sheet.
- Learn how free trade agreements could fast track fracking.
- Read the Issue Brief: Fracking Colorado: Illusory Benefits, Hidden Costs
- Read the Report: U.S. Energy Insecurity: Why Fracking for Oil and Natural Gas Is a False Solution
- Read the Report: Exposing the Oil and Gas Industry’s False Jobs Promise for Shale Gas Development
- How do climate change, fracking and a global water crisis go hand-in-hand?
- Watch our video
- Learn how fracking affects our nation’s food system
- Why is fracking contributing to the global water crisis?
- How is the industry lying about the economic benefits of fracking?
- Undermining Local Democracy: Fast Track, the TPP and Your Community December 2, 2013
- Ban Fracking Now! October 17, 2013
- Frackademia May 28, 2013
- Fracking: The New Global Water Crisis May 7, 2013
- Natural Gas Pipelines: Problems From Beginning to End January 23, 2013
January 2, 2014
The following synopsis which I have found across the internet and put together here pretty much sums up the value of our “legalization” initiatives, whether they be “anti-prohibition”, tax and regulate, Repeal, ‘…”my God given right!”, or “Damn, we are all a bunch of fools to think that prohibition has ended…”.
With the passage of the new recreational and medical cannabis use laws in Colorado and Washington alongside all of the other “medical cannabis” states, everyone is/was jumping for joy at midnight on the 31st of December 2013. Prohibition has ended they proclaim, yet still remains illegal at the Federal and U.N. levels. The U.N. has already jumped on the bandwagon prior to the new year to make sure that Uruguay’s legalization was “in violation of international law”.
The Executive Branch of our U.S. Government seems to be just sitting back and watching, never giving a clear indication of what they will (or won’t) do. In fact, they just do not seem to be doing much of anything anymore with the exception of disagreements on what should be done.
Maybe, just maybe it is because they know something we may not. Maybe, they know that we are truly walking in the age of the NWO and the Global takeover by the U.N. It has already been written in stone and now we just sit back and watch what is going to happen. The U.N. is in control. The U.S. is not. The U.N. owns the World. We do not. No one owns anything, anywhere, anymore. Including the right to our own bodies and minds. The U.N. does. Even the thought that we actually had a chance to control our own lives is not very lucid. The U.S. and every other country within the U.N. are incorporated businesses with “us” as the “stock certificates”. Here are a few links to information on that:
Moving right along, New Year’s Eve 2013 will be one for the history books. Though I doubt actual hardcopy books will exist very much longer and the history can now be changed at the tap of a keyboard, so what that is worth I am not sure. But I know I sure feel sorry for the people who are out there actually believing that they have accomplished anything with their legalization antics. We have all led ourselves into a hole. I damn sure hope it is not too late to climb out of it.
So hear my happy New Year’s Song,
I saw it coming all along,
Yes I did, I know I did,
I sure the Hell saw it coming before YOU did!
So now your free, or so you think,
To smoke your pipe and drink your drink,
The Bell’s were ringing the whole damn time!
Why did you not listen?
Why did you not try?
To educate the masses, by pointing a finger in their eye?
Why did we wait so long,
That the whole damn illusion of freedom,
Flew by, said goodbye, and then was fucking gone?
March 30, 2005
By Nathan Tabor
What do the Statue of Liberty, Independence Hall, and Monticello have in common? The average American with a smattering of historical knowledge might say that those historic sites are all symbolic of America’s unique heritage of freedom.
Monticello, of course, was the home of Thomas Jefferson, the author of the Declaration of Independence. That document (as well as the U.S. Constitution, later) was signed in Independence Hall. The Statue of Liberty memorializes the free nation under God that those founding documents created.
What about the Great Smoky Mountains, Yellowstone Park, and the Grand Canyon? Well, these priceless natural resources are all managed by the U.S. National Parks Service. They are among the most frequently visited natural recreation areas in America, where millions of American families vacation every year.
Would it surprise you to learn that every one of these unique American landmarks is also controlled by the United Nations?
December 11, 2013
…”VIOLATION OF INTERNATIONAL LAW”.
Friday, 13 December 2013 18:30
…”The 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, of which Uruguay and 183 other nations are parties, “aims to combat drug abuse by coordinated international action.”
Marijuana is listed alongside heroin as a Schedule VI substance according to the Convention, the most severe designation outlined by the U.N.’s International Narcotics Review Board.
The Schedule VI designation empowers member states to, “adopt any special measures of control which in its opinion are necessary having regard to the particularly dangerous properties of a drug so included.”
…”In the United States, the administration has so far refused to entirely acknowledge the legitimacy of state nullification efforts on the issue. However, despite strong warnings and opposition from the UN, the Justice Department adopted “guidelines” this year purporting to allow regulated marijuana-market schemes to move forward under close federal scrutiny. Whether national governments will continue to defy the increasingly power hungry UN remains to be seen, but according to analysts, it appears that the planetary outfit will eventually end up on the losing side of the prohibition battle.”
Alex Newman, a foreign correspondent for The New American, is normally based in Europe. He can be reached at email@example.com.
December 13, 2013
Confronting Converging Threats and the Dark Shadows of the Global Economy: Preventing Downward Spirals of Chaos, Insecurity, and Instability
…”The illegal economy includes narcotics trafficking, wildlife trafficking, human trafficking, illegal logging, counterfeit consumer goods and medications, and other illicit enterprises. It is a network of shadowy markets in which illegal arms brokers and narcotics kingpins act as the new CEOs and venture capitalists….”
…”The growing illegal economy supports and enables corrupt officials, criminals, terrorists, and insurgents to mingle and conduct business with another. We must build our own networks to fight these illicit networks and break their corruptive influence…”
…”corruption and crime exist in every corner of the globe. So do terrorism and climate change. They occur in many of our communities, and on those occasions when they converge, they can bring disorder and instability. In this scenario, shadowy markets, criminal entrepreneurs, and illicit networks could become de facto service providers as governments collapse and chaos and insecurity increase, and in the worst case scenario, prey on the victims of pandemics, storms, and other disasters…”
…”We must build a community of responsible governments, businesses, and civil society organizations, working together to build market resiliency, safeguard government integrity, and preserve our common security.”
…”The United States has recently taken steps to make countering the convergence of illicit threats a national security priority. On July 25, 2011, the White House released the Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime: Addressing Converging Threats to National Security, which aims to protect Americans and citizens of partner nations from violence and exploitation at the hands of transnational criminal networks.”
…”Of growing concern are illicit financial hubs and their potentially complicit banks and market-based facilitators and super fixers—such as corrupt lawyers, accountants, black market procurers of commodities and services,…”
…”Moving forward, the United States will continue to build collaborative partnerships and knowledge-based platforms with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the World Bank, the G8/G20, INTERPOL, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), World Customs Organization (WCO), the European Union, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC), Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Organization of American States (OAS), African Union (AU), and other regional and sub-regional bodies.”
…”We also need to better coordinate diplomatic efforts to identify and uproot safe havens and exploitable sanctuaries that enable criminals, terrorists, and other illicit actors and networks to corrupt governments, access illegal markets, and stage operations without fear of reprisal from law enforcement.”
…”Some of the thinking and research which helped to inform our dialogues on combating crime-terror pipelines can be found in a book published in May 2013 by the National Defense University, “Convergence: Illicit Networks and National Security in the Age of Globalization.”
Promoting the consistent application of the international drug control treaties
In discharging its mandate under the international drug control treaties, the Board maintains an ongoing dialogue with Governments through various means, such as regular consultations and country missions. That dialogue has been instrumental to the Board’s efforts to assist Governments in complying with the provisions of the treaties. The Convention Evaluation Section of the INCB Secretariat assists the Board in these task. In addition, the Section publishes the quarterly Newsletter of INCB.
The International Narcotics Control Board
From left: A. Samak, W. Sipp, F. Thoumi, M. Moinard, S. Suryawati, R. Yans, G. Korchagina, V. Sumyai, W. Hall,
D. Johnson, R. Ray
INTERPOL Washington Operations and Command Center
Based on principles embodied in its Constitution, there is no single, national police agency in the United States of America. Instead, a decentralized network of nearly 18,000 different agencies enforces criminal laws according to their respective jurisdiction and mission, which may be local, state, federal or tribal.
Local police and sheriff departments, which make up the majority of national law enforcement agencies, perform traditional functions, including:
- Crime prevention, detection and investigation;
- Criminal incident response;
- Responding to calls for assistance;
- Arrest of criminal suspects;
- Execution of warrants;
- Traffic control;
- Accident investigation;
- Drug enforcement;
- Crime prevention education.
At federal level, more than 65 separate agencies enforce Congress laws with a view to:
- Fighting organized crime and terrorist networks;
- Conducting foreign intelligence operations;
- Investigating financial and cyber offences;
- Tackling child exploitation and trafficking in human beings;
- Tackling drug trafficking;
- Preventing the smuggling of illicit goods;
- Controlling borders and maintaining national security.
Domestic Focus…International Reach
The National Central Bureau (NCB) for the United States of America is the unique designated INTERPOL point of contact, acting on behalf of the Attorney General, the chief law enforcement officer of the United States.
INTERPOL Washington supports US law enforcement agencies and other INTERPOL member countries who seek assistance in criminal investigations which go beyond national borders. INTERPOL Washington coordinates national law enforcement action and response, ensuring that it is consistent with national interests and law, as well as with INTERPOL policies, procedures, and regulations.
INTERPOL Washington is composed of a multi-sector workforce which includes full-time employees, contractors, and personnel seconded from more than 20 local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. The staff includes senior criminal investigators, analysts, attorneys, information technology specialists and administrative support personnel.
At the core of INTERPOL Washington’s criminal investigative support activities is the Operations and Command Center (IOCC). It provides a permanent communications interface between domestic and international law enforcement partners, as well as support to its operational divisions, namely:
- Alien / Fugitive Division;
- Counterterrorism Division;
- Drugs Division;
- Economic Crimes Division;
- Human Trafficking and Child Protection Division;
- State and Local Liaison Division;
- Violent Crimes Division.
INTERPOL Washington has developed four strategic goals to promote cooperation and support to its national law enforcement community and foreign counterparts:
- Combat transnational crime and terrorism;
- Strengthen the security of America’s borders;
- Facilitate international law enforcement cooperation and partnerships;
- Cultivate and develop America’s workforce, management, and operations.
These goals are in keeping with the strategic priorities of Americas Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security and INTERPOL. They reflect the investigative interests of partner law enforcement agencies, and provide the framework for international investigative assistance that is critical to preventing and solving transnational crime.
Agencies represented at INTERPOL Washington
- Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives;
- Capitol Police;
- Citizenship and Immigration Service;
- Coast Guard;
- Customs and Border Protection;
- Department of Defense, U.S. Marine Corps;
- Department of Homeland Security;
- Department of Justice, Office of Enforcement Operations;
- Department of State;
- Drug Enforcement Administration;
- Environmental Protection Agency;
- Federal Bureau of Investigation;
- Fish and Wildlife Service;
- Food and Drug Administration;
- Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General;
- Immigration and Customs Enforcement;
- Internal Revenue Service;
- Marshals Service;
- New York Police Department;
- Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office;
- Postal Inspection Service;
- Secret Service.
“Tribal police are officers hired by native American tribes which have a constitutional government on Reservations. They work closely with local, state, and federal police agencies”
15 December 2010
INTERPOL and United States Federal Law Enforcement Training Center hold advanced police technology and research exercise
The idea of INTERPOL was born in 1914 at the First International Criminal Police Congress, held in Monaco. This meeting brought together police officers and judicial representatives from 14 countries in order to find ways to cooperate across borders.
Over the past 100 years, the idea of international police cooperation has become firmly grounded in practice, with 190 countries now members of INTERPOL. While its vision and mission remain in line with the original goals of the first meeting in 1914, the Organization continues to evolve in response to the needs of its member countries, the emergence of new crime trends, and innovations in technology.
Posted by Good German on January 27, 2013
Forget rising temperatures and bigger storms, this is the big problem that neither side of the mainstream debate over environmental destruction is talking about. Peter Tatchell reported for the Guardian back in 2008:
The rise in carbon dioxide emissions is big news. It is prompting action to reverse global warming. But little or no attention is being paid to the long-term fall in oxygen concentrations and its knock-on effects.
Compared to prehistoric times, the level of oxygen in the earth’s atmosphere has declined by over a third and in polluted cities the decline may be more than 50%. This change in the makeup of the air we breathe has potentially serious implications for our health. Indeed, it could ultimately threaten the survival of human life on earth, according to Roddy Newman, who is drafting a new book, The Oxygen Crisis.
I am not a scientist, but this seems a reasonable concern. It is a possibility that we should examine and assess. So, what’s the evidence?
Around 10,000 years ago, the planet’s forest cover was at least twice what it is today, which means that forests are now emitting only half the amount of oxygen.
Desertification and deforestation are rapidly accelerating this long-term loss of oxygen sources.
The story at sea is much the same. Nasa reports that in the north Pacific ocean oxygen-producing phytoplankton concentrations are 30% lower today, compared to the 1980s. This is a huge drop in just three decades.
Moreover, the UN environment programme confirmed in 2004 that there were nearly 150 “dead zones” in the world’s oceans where discharged sewage and industrial waste, farm fertiliser run-off and other pollutants have reduced oxygen levels to such an extent that most or all sea creatures can no longer live there. This oxygen starvation is reducing regional fish stocks and diminishing the food supplies of populations that are dependent on fishing. It also causes genetic mutations and hormonal changes that can affect the reproductive capacity of sea life, which could further diminish global fish supplies.
Professor Robert Berner of Yale University has researched oxygen levels in prehistoric times by chemically analysing air bubbles trapped in fossilised tree amber. He suggests that humans breathed a much more oxygen-rich air 10,000 years ago.
Further back, the oxygen levels were even greater. Robert Sloan has listed the percentage of oxygen in samples of dinosaur-era amber as: 28% (130m years ago), 29% (115m years ago), 35% (95m years ago), 33% (88m years ago), 35% (75m years ago), 35% (70m years ago), 35% (68m years ago), 31% (65.2m years ago), and 29% (65m years ago).
Professor Ian Plimer of Adelaide University and Professor Jon Harrison of the University of Arizona concur. Like most other scientists they accept that oxygen levels in the atmosphere in prehistoric times averaged around 30% to 35%, compared to only 21% today – and that the levels are even less in densely populated, polluted city centres and industrial complexes, perhaps only 15 % or lower.
Much of this recent, accelerated change is down to human activity, notably the industrial revolution and the burning of fossil fuels. The Professor of Geological Sciences at Notre Dame University in Indiana, J Keith Rigby, was quoted in 1993-1994 as saying:
In the 20th century, humanity has pumped increasing amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere by burning the carbon stored in coal, petroleum and natural gas. In the process, we’ve also been consuming oxygen and destroying plant life – cutting down forests at an alarming rate and thereby short-circuiting the cycle’s natural rebound. We’re artificially slowing down one process and speeding up another, forcing a change in the atmosphere.
Very interesting. But does this decline in oxygen matter? Are there any practical consequences that we ought to be concerned about? What is the effect of lower oxygen levels on the human body? Does it disrupt and impair our immune systems and therefore make us more prone to cancer and degenerative diseases?
The effects of long term oxygen deprivation on the brain, called cerebral hypoxia, are known and some sound reminiscent of the general rise of stupidity in the industrialized world.
Professor Ervin Laszlo (quoted in Tatchell’s article) writes:
Evidence from prehistoric times indicates that the oxygen content of pristine nature was above the 21% of total volume that it is today. It has decreased in recent times due mainly to the burning of coal in the middle of the last century. Currently the oxygen content of the Earth’s atmosphere dips to 19% over impacted areas, and it is down to 12 to 17% over the major cities. At these levels it is difficult for people to get sufficient oxygen to maintain bodily health: it takes a proper intake of oxygen to keep body cells and organs, and the entire immune system, functioning at full efficiency. At the levels we have reached today cancers and other degenerative diseases are likely to develop. And at 6 to 7% life can no longer be sustained.
More specific details regarding the drop in atmospheric oxygen can be found here.
by PRW Staff — January 6, 2013 – 11:13am
The article below was written by Ted Nace, who founded CoalSwarm. Since 2008, the Center for Media and Democracy has been hosting the CoalSwarm wiki project on CMD’s SourceWatch.org website. SourceWatch is a sister site of this site, PRWatch.org, and other sites of CMD, which include ALECexposed.org and the FoodRightsNetwork.org.
NASA climatologist James Hansen is sometimes called “the godfather of climate science” for his pioneering efforts to warn the world about the threat of global warming. Hansen could also be called the godfather of Earth Island Institute-sponsored project CoalSwarm. It was Hansen who, in 2007, called for a moratorium on new coal-fired power plants after U.S. power companies revealed plans to build more than 150 such plants in the country. His proposal became a rallying cry for hundreds of grassroots citizens’ groups across the country. CoalSwarm was created to help that effort, giving environmental activists, local residents, and policymakers the information they need to challenge the muscle of the coal industry and advocate for a renewable energy economy.
Coal-fired power plant in UtahIn the waning years of the Bush administration, the scattered activists committed to stopping “King Coal” faced long odds. The companies proposing coal plants generally enjoyed the support of local and state officials. Federal officials were greasing the way for more coal mining. Despite the difficult political terrain, environmental and public health advocates went to work, deploying tactics ranging from regulatory interventions to direct-action protests. Power plant opponents joined forces with anti-mining groups in Appalachia, the Southwest, and the Northern Plains, which had already spent decades fighting destructive mining practices such as mountaintop removal.
For this geographically dispersed movement, social media such as listserves, blogs, online publications, and other communication tools proved invaluable in bringing activists together and allowing a diverse array of groups to coordinate their efforts.
CoalSwarm added another tool to the mix — an informational website known as a wiki. CoalSwarm’s initial goal was to empower activists with up-to-date information on the status of each known coal plant proposal. CoalSwarm developed its information on the Center for Media and Democracy’s Sourcewatch.org website, a collaborative online reference that provides portals on topics ranging from the tobacco industry to the financial crisis to the PR industry and corporate front groups.
The anti-coal movement decided to focus on stopping individual coal projects. This proved to be a winning strategy: By October 2012, more than 170 proposed coal plants had been cancelled. For the climate movement, these successes provide a measure of hope at a time when efforts to pass a comprehensive climate change policy at the national level or an overarching climate framework at the global level have failed.
Over time, the scope of the anti-coal movement steadily broadened beyond the issue of new coal plants. In Appalachia, activists struggled against mountaintop removal with marches, blockades, and tree-sits at mine sites; nationwide, banks financing mining operations faced public pressure to give up their stake in dirty coal. CoalSwarm likewise broadened its contents with hundreds of new wiki pages on mines, mining companies, protests, and on the political underpinnings of Big Coal. A major coal-waste spill in Tennessee added the issue of coal waste to the activist agenda, and again CoalSwarm expanded its coverage.
By 2011, having succeeded in stopping most new coal plants, activists launched a nationwide campaign to retire the existing fleet of 500 aging coal plants that then provided the U.S. with about half of its power. The effort was boosted by a $50 million grant from the Bloomberg Foundation to the Sierra Club in July 2011. The initial results were encouraging. In Chicago, for instance, local citizens teamed up with the Little Village Environmental Justice Organization and Pilsen Environmental Rights and Reform Organization, and, with assistance from the Sierra Club and Greenpeace, finally won a long struggle to shut down a pair of aging power plants.
Students at universities and colleges across the country, too, organized campaigns to shut down coal-fired plants. Once many of those campaigns succeeded, campus environmentalists upped their demands with campaigns aimed at convincing college endowment funds to divest from coal-related stocks. CoalSwarm assisted this effort with profiles of campus coal plants and fact sheets on the “Filthy Fifteen” power and mining companies that students selected as divestment targets.
With the struggle shifting from proposed coal plants to existing coal plants, CoalSwarm’s data on existing coal plants became its most frequently accessed pages. The wiki page “Existing U.S. Coal Plants” had been viewed more than 373,000 times as of October 2012. A rapidly growing table on CoalSwarm’s page “Coal Plant Retirements” showed the success of the plant-retirement campaign: By late 2012, 124 plants were scheduled for retirement. Meanwhile, coal’s share of US power generation was falling rapidly: from 50 percent in 2005 to 38 percent in the 12 months ending in July 2012.
Overseas, however, the picture is not as pretty. Worldwide coal use grew by 61 percent from 2001 to 2011, with nearly all of the increase happening in Asia, especially China.
In 2011 and 2012, CoalSwarm began a concerted effort to broaden the scope of the wiki internationally, beginning with Australia, the world’s leading coal exporter. In a joint effort with the Australian group, Environment Victoria, CoalSwarm created the “Coal Watch” project. In 2011, CoalSwarm worked closely with Greenpeace Australia-Pacific to organize the first convergence of anti-coal activists from across Australia. In 2012, CoalSwarm worked with New Zealand’s Coal Action Network Aotearoa, to create a comprehensive reference on that country’s existing and proposed coal projects.
CoalSwarm turned its attention to India after a 2011 study by Prayas Energy Group reported that hundreds of new coal plants were set to receive environmental permits. In the spring of 2012, CoalSwarm posted an India coal-plant tracker that showed, for the first time, the location and status of 549 proposed coal plants. CoalSwarm also completed the first countrywide survey of grassroots organizing against coal projects in India, describing 32 locations of community opposition, many involving large demonstrations and numerous incidents of anti-coal protesters being killed by police.
For Southeast Asia, another hot spot for coal mining, CoalSwarm teamed up with the Southeast Asia Renewable Energy People’s Assembly to create a map-based tracker linked to wiki pages on coal plants, mines, and terminals in the region, as well as on proposed clean energy projects.
Meanwhile, back in the United States, coal exports have become another troubling issue. Declining domestic need for coal-fired power (in large part due to rock-bottom natural gas prices) has led to a new push by coal mining companies to build export facilities, especially in the Pacific Northwest. In 2012, CoalSwarm developed wiki pages on existing and proposed coal terminals, knitting the information together with the first global coal-terminal tracking map.
The project also began developing information on an issue closely related to coal: fracking for natural gas. While environmentalists debate whether the switch to natural gas is beneficial from a climate perspective, there is no denying that at the local level fracking operations have huge environmental and public health impacts. In addition to providing state-by-state overviews on fracking operations and protests, CoalSwarm provides lists of coal plants being converted to natural gas, information on fracking’s impacts on water and air, and natural-gas-transmission leakage rates.
By the fall of 2012, the CoalSwarm wiki had attracted more than 19 million page views and had grown to some 6,000 pages of information, including profiles of thousands of plants, mines, terminals, and companies; energy overviews of more than 50 countries, as well as of every U.S., Australian, and Indian state; and numerous articles on the impacts of coal and cleaner energy alternatives.
To make all this information more easily accessible, CoalSwarm revamped its website, which now has a clickable globe and topical directory. The aim is to improve accessibility and live up to the description of the project by environmental pioneer Lester Brown, who wrote: “CoalSwarm is the central nervous system that this movement needed. It is invaluable.”
Governor Beshear, the General Assembly and the Energy and Environment Cabinet (EEC) are seeking comments on how the Commonwealth should move forward with regulating the oil and gas industry — including fracking. Around the country, fracking has been known to create toxic air pollution, contaminate drinking water and lead to health problems in communities near fracking sites.
¹ Tell Governor Beshear’s administration that regulations won’t protect the people of Kentucky from the consequences of fracking.
Fracking, formally known as hydraulic fracturing, is the destructive process of extracting oil and gas from deep underground by injecting millions of gallons of fracking fluids — a mixture of chemicals, water and sand — into a well at high pressure to crack open underground rock formations and release oil and gas.
Since the early 2000s, fracking has been growing rapidly across the country, producing massive volumes of toxic waste, causing accidents, leaks and spills that threaten drinking water, and releasing hazardous air pollution. It has also created explosion risks in homes, marred landscapes and fragmented forests, damaged roads with heavy truck traffic, and lowered property values. Take a stand against fracking in Kentucky.
Over the last six months, New York and Maryland both rejected moving forward with fracking after damning health reports showed that the health risks posed by fracking were too high. If it’s not safe in those states, then it’s not safe here, either.
Send a message to your lawmakers: Kentuckians don’t want to be part of an uncontrolled public health experiment.
Fracking isn’t safe for our communities, and it only prolongs our destructive reliance on fossil fuels. We can meet our energy needs with clean, renewable resources. Instead of spending time trying to regulate a polluting industry, the Governor, the General Assembly and the EEC should put their efforts into energy solutions that don’t poison human health, damage local economies or trash the environment.
Thanks for taking action,
Senior Southern Region Organizer
Food & Water Watch
1. Toward an understanding of the environmental and public health impacts of shale gas development: an analysis of the peer reviewed scientific literature, 2009-2014, PSE Health Energy, December 10, 2014.
The Industrial Hemp Farming Act, S.134, only has nine (9) cosponsors and "VOTE HEMP" needs signatures now!
The Industrial Hemp Farming Act, S.134, only has nine (9) cosponsors. The most recent cosponsors are Senator Bennett (D-CO), Senator Tester (D-MT) and Senator Baldwin (D-WI). We are grateful for their support but we need many more.
This important legislation would greatly benefit opportunities in terms of jobs and economic development in legal hemp states by removing industrial hemp from the Controlled Substances Act.
Together we can pass this legislation, but we need your support today. Add your name to show the Senate the overwhelming grassroots support behind the Industrial Hemp Farming Act.
As always, thank you for your continued support of this effort to restore industrial hemp as an agricultural commodity. Please share this with friends, family and any network that is willing to help with our cause.
About Vote Hemp
Vote Hemp is a national, single-issue, non-profit organization dedicated to the acceptance of and a free market for industrial hemp, low-THC oilseed and fiber varieties of Cannabis, and to changes in current law to allow U.S. farmers to once again grow the crop.
Web Site: http://www.VoteHemp.com
Support Vote Hemp
Vote Hemp depends entirely on donations to support our work. Please consider making a donation today.
Contribute Here: http://www.VoteHemp.com/contribute
Vote Hemp, Inc.
Colleen (Sauvé) Keahey
National Outreach Coordinator
Vote Hemp, Inc. | P.O. Box 1571 | Brattleboro | VT | 05302
*This post for “Vote Hemp” is a free service from Sheree Krider.
The cruelty perpetrated against children and adults at JRC is psychological and physical abuse, couched in the name of ‘treatment.’ The severe pain and suffering leveled against residents there violates the United Nations Convention against Torture.
International Policy Advocacy
Promoting worldwide recognition of abuse as torture
Disability Rights International has engaged in a multi-year campaign to bring about worldwide recognition that the abuse of children and adults with disabilities can constitute torture through our reports on Turkey, Romania, Serbia, the United States and our litigation against Paraguay in the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. Even though the international community has recently made great strides in the recognition of the rights of people with disabilities, the discrimination and abuse of people with disabilities was historically not viewed as rising to the level of human rights abuses associated with the highest level of international opprobrium: torture. In part, this is because the international human rights community failed to challenge the claims of medical authorities that treatment practices were medically necessary or appropriate. Through careful investigation and fact-finding, Disability Rights International has been able to demonstrate that these practices are painful, dangerous, and not justifiable as treatment.
In 2009, we made major gains in this campaign through our work in Serbia.
When the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) reviewed Serbia’s human rights record in 2008, they identified abuses documented in our report – the long-term physical restraint of children with disabilities — as “ill treatment or torture.” According to staff of the UN Special Rapporteur against Torture, this is the first time that the CRC has identified such practices in this manner. In 2009, the European Union adopted the findings of the CRC and recognized these practices as torture. In the Spring of 2009, the European Union invited Disability Rights International to participate in an official conference on torture in Serbia. This not only provided tremendous support for our advocacy efforts in Serbia, it also set precedent within the European Union by treating these types of abuses within the context of its work against torture.
We released a US report in April 2010 which found children and adults with disabilities tortured and abused at a “special needs” residential facility in Massachusetts and filed an “urgent appeal” with the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture to demand the United States government end the torture immediately.
The report, Torture not Treatment: Electric Shock and Long-Term Restraint in the United States on Children and Adults with Disabilities at the Judge Rotenberg Center (JRC), documents the use of electric shocks on the legs, arms, torsos and soles of feet of people with disabilities – for weeks, months and sometimes years. JRC uses punishments as treatment. Residents at JRC are diagnosed with a variety of behavioral, intellectual and psychiatric disabilities such as autism, bi-polar disorder and learning disabilities.
The cruelty perpetrated against children and adults at JRC is psychological and physical abuse, couched in the name of ‘treatment.’ The severe pain and suffering leveled against residents there violates the United Nations Convention against Torture.
On May 11, as a result of receiving our urgent appeal, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Manfred Nowak, sent a letter to the US State Department asking the government to investigate. “This is torture,” said Nowak on ABC Nightline on June 30, 2010, “I have no doubts about it. It is inflicted in a situation where a victim is powerless. I mean, a child in the restraint chair, being then subjected to electric shocks, how more powerless can you be?” When asked if this treatment would be allowed on a convicted terrorist, Nowak responded, “No, of course not.” Today, due to the work of Disability Rights International, putting a person in a cage or punishing someone with electricity is no longer labeled as “treatment,” and is correctly recognized as torture.
Recognition of international disability rights in the United States
Disability Rights International continues to play a leading role in introducing international human rights principles to the United States. As Vice-President of the US International Council on Disabilities (USICD), Eric Rosenthal is co-chairing the committee on ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Disability Rights International utilizes its expertise in international law and practice in educating the US disability rights community, Obama administration officials, and US legislators about the importance and significance of the CRPD. As a result of our work with USICD, the United States signed the CRPD in July 2009.
Promoting the CRPD in international oversight and enforcement systems
Disability Rights International organized a conference on the use of international human rights litigation to advance the enforcement of the CRPD. This meeting, held last fall in collaboration with the Open Society Institute and the Washington College of Law, American University, brought together top legal experts from Europe, Africa, and the Americas. Dinah Shelton, recently elected to serve on the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, gave the keynote address and participated in a strategy session on the use of international oversight systems to protect the rights of people with disabilities. We prepared and presented a detailed case-study of lessons learned from our six-year record of litigation in the Inter-American Human Rights System to protect rights and promote deinstitutionalization in Paraguay. The meeting has led to an ongoing series of collaborative meetings among international legal experts to promote implementation of the CRPD through regional human rights systems.
Working to end international support for new institutions and segregated service systems
Article 32 of the CRPD requires that international development funds be used in a manner that promotes the object and purpose of the convention. Since the CRPD establishes a right to community integration, international funding organizations should no longer be funding institutions that segregate people with disabilities from society.
Disability Rights International has played a major role in shifting US government funds from institutions to support community integration. We have taken a leading role in getting Congressional approval for legislation that would require the United States to use our foreign assistance money in a manner that was accessible and appropriate for people with disabilities. In 2008, MDRI proposed that the US National Council on Disability conduct a worldwide study on the use of funds by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to determine whether they comply with CRPD article 32. In 2009, NCD approved our proposal and has commissioned a world-wide study. We joined a consortium of advocacy groups that were awarded this contract. We have helped design and conduct research for this study, which will be published in late 2010.
Disability Rights International has established a new “Donor Accountability Project.” This project is documenting the impact of international donor funds in rebuilding institutions in Serbia and other countries of the Balkans. It will provide information on US government funding of institutions in the Balkans that can be used for the NCD study.
Over the last five years, we have used our country reports to bring worldwide attention to the use of international donor funds to rebuild institutions. Our report on Romania, which documented this problem, received extensive attention as Romania celebrated the twentieth anniversary of the fall of Ceaucescu. In 2009, we assisted the BBC in conducting a follow-up investigation of children formerly detained in Romania’s institutions. The BBC report showed that many children with disabilities once detained in institutions are now languishing in long-term adult facilities.
We recently worked with UNICEF to examine Vietnam’s implementation of the CRPD and present recommendations to international donors about the use of international development funds to advance the rights of children with disabilities. We conducted fact-finding missions to Vietnam in 2009 and conducted workshops for Vietnamese government officials, members of the National Assembly, and international NGO’s operating in Vietnam. We presented our report to UNICEF in November 2009. This report is an important step towards Disability Rights International’s goal of educating international development organizations to implement programs that recognize and protect the rights of persons with disabilities. While this report is directed toward the government and international donors operating in Vietnam, the report is likely the first time UNICEF has recognized its new obligations under article 32 of the CRPD. We can use this recognition to influence the work of UNICEF and other international donors around the world.
The reform of international development policy is essential to Disability Rights International’s goal of ending the worldwide institutionalization of children with disabilities. Please read more about our Worldwide Campaign to End the Institutionalization of Children.
IMMEDIATELY STOP FEDERAL FUNDING for a pharmaceutical drug to treat "MARIJUANA ADDICTION". THIS IS PREPOSTEROUS!
The Washington Times reported on 6/26/15 that the Federal Government is “fast tracking” Pharma research for a Marijuana addiction drug. The research gets $3 million grant as Obama encourages legalization of Cannabis.
This is just too much! We do not need a “drug” to detoxify us from Cannabis! We need more Hemp and Cannabis Oil for Medical use,
Stop the funding effective immediately and give that $3 Million to a better cause.
Fact: GW Pharma has concluded that “Cannabis is not addictive” according to their ad for SATIVEX (which has not been approved for marketing in the U.S. as of yet — And SHOULD BE!). It additionally states that it does not appear to have withdrawal effects when stopped suddenly”…
Stop the INSANITY NOW! Stop the funding for an addiction drug for Cannabis!
Published Date: Jun 26, 2015
PLEASE SIGN PETITION ABOVE!!!
By Kelly Riddell – The Washington Times – Thursday, June 25, 2015
The National Institutes of Health is dedicating $3 million to fast-track the development of drugs to treat marijuana addiction — an estimated 4.2 million Americans are hooked on cannabis — even as the president encourages its legalization and more states look to enact laws for its recreational use.
“Cannabis use is an increasing public health concern in the United States that requires immediate attention,” reads the government’s grant proposal, issued in May. “Given the high prevalence of marijuana use and its associated disorders and the large number of people who seek treatment, there is a critical need to discover and develop safe and effective treatments for [cannabis use disorders].”
The National Institutes of Health and the National Institute on Drug Abuse plan to award $3 million to fund three projects aimed at fast-tracking research on drugs to help curb marijuana abuse, and the Food and Drug Administration has not approved any medications to treat pot addiction.
In its proposal, the National Institute on Drug Abuse states that marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug, with an estimated 2.4 million people trying it for the first time last year, and has the highest number of Americans dependent on or abusing it.
In March, President Obama said he was “encouraged” by efforts at the state level to allow greater access to marijuana. In an interview with The New Yorker last year, he said, “I don’t think [marijuana] is more dangerous than alcohol.”
During Mr. Obama’s tenure, the Department of Justice said it would not prosecute or enforce laws against the production and sale of marijuana at the state level. To date, 23 states and the District of Columbia have enacted laws allowing pot to be used for a variety of medical conditions. Colorado, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and the District of Columbia have permitted recreational use of pot.
The administration’s most recent move loosening the federal restrictions on weed was made Monday, when it lifted a bureaucratic requirement for those wishing to conduct scientific research on the drug.
For committing $3 million in taxpayer money to find a treatment to a drug that the administration is looking to make more accessible, the National Institute on Drug Abuse gets this week’s Golden Hammer, The Washington Times’ weekly distinction highlighting waste, fraud and abuse — or in this case hypocrisy — in the federal government.
“The public discourse has shifted in recent years to only want to talk about the benefits of marijuana. But addiction is the huge elephant in the room that many lawmakers want to sweep under the carpet,” said Kevin Sabet, who served in the Obama administration as senior adviser at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. “The problem is huge and, as marijuana becomes more legal, we’re going to be seeing it more often.”
According to a study by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University, the number of heavy marijuana users has increased sevenfold in the U.S. since its lowest point in 1992. Although the heavy marijuana users represent only about 2 percent of the U.S. population, daily and near-daily marijuana users consume 80 percent of the marijuana in the country.
“The entire medical community is aware of marijuana addiction and how big a problem it is,” said Dr. Stuart Gitlow, a former president at the American Society of Addiction Medicine. “If we go back to the time of Prohibition — from a public health standpoint it was an enormous success, there was a per capita drop in the consumption of alcohol, in accidents related to alcohol, and liver disease was reduced by two-thirds. After it ended, all of these stats went back to where they were before.”
He predicted similar results as marijuana prohibition eases.
“Ending the prohibition of marijuana, what we’ll see is a dramatic increase in its use and the total number of people affected by issues like intoxication and addiction,” he said.
Mr. Gitlow estimates that 15 percent to 20 percent of youths and 10 percent of adults who try marijuana will become addicted to it. Qualities commonly associated with pot addiction are apathy, loss of concentration, paranoia and increased likelihood of psychosis, which leads to increased psychiatric admissions, he said.
Originally posted on Engineering Evil:
Public Release: 25-Jun-2015
New study could shape poverty debate in presidential election
Brigham Young University
The majority of the United States’ poor aren’t sitting on street corners. They’re employed at low-paying jobs, struggling to support themselves and a family.
In the past, differing definitions of employment and poverty prevented researchers from agreeing on who and how many constitute the “working poor.”
But a new study by sociologists at BYU, Cornell and LSU provides a rigorous new estimate. Their work suggests about 10 percent of working households are poor. Additionally, households led by women, minorities or individuals with low education are more likely to be poor, but employed.
Science magazine says the data from this study is relevant to the upcoming presidential election, as candidates discuss ways to help the working poor move out of poverty. Understanding the size and characteristics of the group makes this goal more realistic.
View original 332 more words
Originally posted on peoples trust toronto:
Normally, I write articles about spirituality and how to take actions on our dreams. But in order to take action on our dreams, we need the simplest foundation: strength in our body. And when we eat well, we feel more energized, clear, and ready to take action on the work that?s meaningful to us.
Now, I can?t give a recipe without giving a little back-story. My background includes a diploma as a Registered Holistic Nutritionist (R.H.N.). Although I left nutritional consulting as my career focus behind several years ago, I still see nutrition as a vital ingredient to living a happy life. What we eat affects us on every level.
I feel it?s only fair to share my opinion based on my background in nutrition: I do not think that gluten-free is necessarily healthier. I think some people feel better when they choose gluten-free, and some people…
View original 576 more words
Coca planters will be giving Pope Francis a pie and other goods made out of coca leaves, when he arrives next July for an official visit to Bolivia. The gifts will be delivered during the scheduled meeting of Francis wish social movements’ organization in Santa Cruz, according to the organizers.
Leonardo Loza, vice-president of the Cochabamba Tropic Federations, an organization of coca planters, said that a group of them will be handing the Pope a pie, mate (infusion coca tea), and other ‘products’ which are made out of the coca plant which is so closely ingrained in the country’s culture and natural medicine.
“The initiative is to show the Pope how much has been advanced in the industrialization of the coca plant, which will obviously have a great national and international repercussion” indicated Loza.
The gifts presentation will take place in the framework of the meeting with social movements in the city of Santa Cruz in parallel to the Pope’s visit who will be staying in Bolivia from 8 to 10 July, as part of a tour of Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay.
Bolivia together with Colombia and Peru are three of the main world suppliers and producers of coca leaves, which is the main ingredient for elaborating its illegal derivate, cocaine, amply consumed in the Western world.
However coca leaves in Bolivia are closely linked to the country’s indigenous culture and organic medicines, and as such are recognized in Bolivia’s constitution, but a significant part of the leaves production ends up with the drugs industry and cartels.
The Bolivian government has insisted in advancing with the industrialization of the plant with the purpose of exporting derivates, although coca leaves remain in the narcotics list of the UN convention against drugs, which thus bans any kind of exports from coca.
A year ago the coca planters gave UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon a coca leaves pie during his visit to Bolivia when the G77 plus China summit in Santa Cruz. The top diplomat accepted the pie but was never seen eating it.
Pope Francis is expected in Bolivia on 8 July where he arrives from Ecuador. He will spend a few hours in the capital, La Paz and the neighboring city of El Alto (3.500 meters above sea level) before travelling to Santa Cruz, on the plans, where most of his activities will take place.
Originally posted on Ace News Services:
#AceNewsReport – #CHARLESTON June.19: On Thursday, hours after a white gunman killed nine people in a black church in Charleston, S.C., a Confederate flag continued to fly over the grounds of the state’s Capitol.
The Supreme Court ruled the same day that Texas did not violate the First Amendment by refusing to allow the flag on its license plates. […]
Posted: Wed 11:10 AM, Jun 17, 2015
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) – The number of Kentucky children who have been removed from homes because of abuse or neglect has reached nearly unprecedented levels.
The Courier-Journal reports that there are currently 8,208 children who have been removed from their homes and placed in foster or residential care. Five years ago, that number was about 7,000.
Teresa James, commissioner of the agency that oversees child protection in Kentucky, says that statistic is close to an all-time high.
Jefferson County Family Court Chief Judge Paula Sherlock says much of the blame for the trend lies with the public’s growing use of heroin.
Kentucky lawmakers this year passed a broad bill aimed at combating addiction and getting more people into drug treatment.
James says the state uses about 3,500 foster homes, and is seeking more.
By Sheldon Compton firstname.lastname@example.org
HIPPO – Hippo resident Todd Howard had never been employed in his adult life when he was laid off as an engineer for the coal industry in 2010. He had also never farmed a day in his life. All that was about to change.
After Howard lost his job as an engineer, the Hippo resident said a key aspect of his personality was revealed in the best way possible.
“They had to make the decision to lay folks off, and I’ve just never been one to sit around and do nothing,” he said.
Howard lost his job in December and by Feb. 10 he had constructed a green house. Construction on that green house led to a crop of 10,000 tomato plants the first year. By the third year, Howard was overseeing the Floyd County Farmer’s Market and closing in on $50,000 in gross sales. But the time required with the market became difficult to manage.
“The farmer’s market was taking up a lot of my time and last year we decided to to try a sixteen-week program with Community Supported Agriculture,” Howard said.
This move launched Howard’s work as a full-time farmer, and now he is at the forefront of the movement to grow hemp in Kentucky in an effort to see Eastern Kentucky’s economy improved through ready resources not always popular throughout the state and nation.
Shortly after his efforts with the farmer’s market got underway, Howard soon became a board member for a statewide community farm alliance, testifying before senate and house agriculture committees, supporting the hemp bill introduced roughly three years ago.
“After getting to know some of the folks who helped get this legislation passed, I made a few acquaintances in that regard,” he said. “Mike Lewis and I got close.”
Lewis, who is a Kentucky farmer and COO with the organization Freedom Seed and Feed, a company with offices in Lexington, reached out to Howard, along with University of Pikeville’s Eric Mathis, visiting lecturer of applied sustainability at UPike.
The organization is a subsidiary of Mountain High Acquisitions Corporation, a Colorado-based company who advocate the legalization of marijuana and industrial hemp.
“He (Mathis) got in touch with me and asked if I’d be interested in growing some hemp, saying Mike had recommended me,” Howard said. “I’m a person notorious for diving in head-first without realizing sometimes I’m diving into the kiddie pool, but in we got a site located, got seed in the ground. So we have crop in the ground. It’s sprouted, it’s coming up, and it’s growing.”
The site is located along what was once strip mine land at the Pikville-Pike County Regional Airport, a section of land difficult to farm, to say the least, according to Howard.
“Growing on these mine sites is like a crap shoot,” he added. “You don’t know what you’re going to get. To date, no one I know has had any success growing at these places. The land is compacted soil and has huge rocks. It’s nothing like a standard agricultural piece of land you’d normally work with.”
Howard said the general goal is to create smaller cooperative models for growing industrial hemp on a larger scale.
“Obviously Eastern Kentucky has a brand right now and has some potential for this,” Howard said. “It’s sort of the elephant in the room to a player on a larger scale with all of this acreage. Let’s find a use for it.”
Sheldon Compton is a staff writer for the Floyd County Times. He can be reached at 886-8506.
PRESTONSBURG, Ky. — The Social Security Administration told Leroy Burchett and some 900 others like him in Kentucky and West Virginia last month that their disability benefits were being cut off because they were tied to an attorney suspected of fraud.
His wife said he then stopped taking his antidepressants and shot and killed himself less than two weeks later, on June 1. Now she’s suing that attorney who represented him, Eric Conn, blaming Conn for her husband’s death.
“If he hadn’t got that letter and hadn’t been losing his medical insurance this never would have happened,” Burchett’s widow, Emma, told The Associated Press, weeping as she recounted her husband’s final days. “He just wasn’t that kind of person. I mean, heck yeah we had problems, everybody has problems. But not like that.”
The wrongful death lawsuit filed Wednesday targets Conn, who represented all 900 of those people whose benefits were temporarily cut off. The agency restored those benefits June 4, at least until the recipients had a chance to plead their case in court. He has been investigated on accusations of fraud before, though he has never been charged with a crime and has denied any wrongdoing.
Conn bills himself as “Mr. Social Security” and estimates he handles roughly 60 percent of disability claims in this part of Appalachia where many depend on government benefits because of the coal industry’s decline and little else in the way of job opportunities. The parking lot of Conn’s office displays small-scale replicas of the Lincoln Memorial and the Statue of Liberty, and billboards urge potential clients to call 232-HURT.
He is the target of a whistle-blower lawsuit in federal court brought by two former Social Security Administration employees. The federal government declined to prosecute Conn in that case, according to his attorney, Kent Wicker. But the letters sent by the Social Security Administration told Burchett and others their benefits were suspended because “there is reason to believe fraud or similar fault” was involved with evidence submitted by Conn and his office.
Conn’s attorneys instead blamed the Social Security Administration for suspending the benefits without a hearing. And they blamed the publicity surrounding the suspension for creating a panic.
“Let me emphasize once again how sorry Mr. Conn is … for the people who have been victimized. But they were victimized by the Social Security Administration and not by Eric Conn,” said Joseph Lambert, one of Conn’s attorneys and a former chief justice of the Kentucky Supreme Court. “One wonders if the publicity and the somewhat overwrought rhetoric may have had something to do with Mr. Burchett’s decision.”
Mark Hinkle, a spokesman for the Social Security Administration, declined to comment about the lawsuit but said “the agency is saddened by Mr. Burchett’s death and his family remains in our thoughts.”
More than 8 percent of residents in Kentucky and West Virginia draw disability checks, among the highest rates in the nation. More than a quarter — 56,000 — of the nearly 194,000 people in Kentucky’s 5th Congressional District are considered disabled workers, according to the Social Security Administration. In Floyd County alone, more than 11 percent of the population receives disability benefits.
Leroy Burchett, was a furniture delivery truck driver when he met Emma, a part-time clerk at a Double Quick convenience store. He wooed her without saying a word, simply stopping in the store frequently and putting a pack of gum on the counter.
They were married for 14 years and had two children together. Emma Burchett, 45, said her 41-year-old husband had worked manual labor since he was old enough to push a lawn mower. He was plagued by chronic pain, culminating in several surgeries to have metal plates installed in his neck and back. He was granted disability about six years ago with Conn’s help.
“It was our main source of income,” Emma Burchett said.
Emma Burchett said she stopped working after she was diagnosed with breast cancer and black lung disease, an ailment caused by exposure to coal dust that mostly affects coal miners. She has never worked in a coal mine but has lived near one for years.
When the letter from the Social Security Administration arrived, Emma Burchett said she panicked, but her husband was even worse off. Afraid that he was losing access to his medication, including two antidepressants, he quit taking them.
“If he was even late taking it, he would get confused in his head,” she said.
She urged him to keep taking them, telling him she would lower his dosage to help his supply last longer until they could get everything straightened out.
But on June 1, Emma Burchett said her husband told her he “couldn’t take it anymore” before shooting himself. The next day, she discovered he hadn’t been taking his medication. The pill bottles were still full.
PIKEVILLE, KY, June 8 | By Valerie Volcovici
Portraits of local heroes are stenciled onto the walls of an old Coca-Cola bottling plant in Pikeville, Kentucky: 10 images that seem to be watching over apprentices hunched over keyboards in what has become the office of businessman Charles “Rusty” Justice’s digital startup.
Those pathbreakers include John Goodlett, a NASA engineer who worked on the Mars Viking landers and Catherine Langley, the first Kentucky woman to serve in the U.S. Congress. All hailed from the coal producing counties of eastern Kentucky, now grappling with the industry’s decline.
Justice hopes they will inspire the apprentices, nine of whom are former coal workers, as they re-train at Bit Source, the software and web development company he co-owns.
“Coal miners are high-tech workers – they just get dirty,” says Justice, listing the tech skills that miners used daily: computers, robotics and 3D satellite imaging.
As market forces and federal regulations squeeze east Kentucky’s coal industry, people are searching for new lines of work.
“The middle skill economy is going to really explode in the next few years,” says Jack Conway, the state’s attorney general, a Democrat who is running for governor in November. “The jobs will be in logistics, infrastructure, health services and IT, and I want those jobs here.”
Kentucky hopes to lay the foundation for that kind of economy in August, when construction begins on the fiber backbone of a planned $250 million high-speed Internet network for the whole state, starting in the rural east.
Kentucky ranks 46th among U.S. states in high-speed Internet access, with nearly a quarter of rural areas lacking any access.
It will take at least a decade for high-speed Internet to have a real impact, says Robert LaRose, a professor in telecommunications at Michigan State University.
“Broadband access is only the beginning,” LaRose said. “The workforce has to be retrained, and overall levels of educational attainment need to be raised, including both school children and mid-life career changers.”
In December, Kentucky signed a deal with Australia’s Macquarie Capital to build out the 3,000-mile (4,800-km) open access network with $50 million in state bonds and federal grants.
“We’re going to build the system and we’re going to make it available,” Governor Steven Beshear said in December. “But it’s up to our businesses, our communities and our educational institutions to take advantage of this opportunity.”
That point was underscored by Richard Lowenberg, a broadband planner who runs the 1st-Mile Institute’s New Mexico Broadband for All initiative.
“Building out needed broadband infrastructure to all alone will not assure improved quality of life as an outcome,” Lowenberg said. “That is dependent on how we use and what we do with our new high-bandwidth networks.”
Republican Congressman Hal Rogers, who has represented eastern Kentucky for 34 years, says broadband will create a “Super I-Way” of information technology jobs, like data management and call centers. He envisions the rise of what he calls “Silicon Holler,” a technology corridor in the small villages clustered between Appalachia’s rolling hills.
There was a hint of that potential this month when customer care and electronic billing company EOS announced plans to invest nearly $4 million in a 20,000 square foot (1,900 square meter) call center in Somerset, promising to create 150 jobs.
Jeff Whitehead, executive director of the Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program (EKCEP) in Hazard, a workforce training program serving 23 coalfield counties, says laid-off coal workers are “hungry” for IT and tele-working jobs.
Whitehead said EKCEP received more than 900 applicants when Bit Source asked him to recruit its first 10 trainees last year. EKCEP pays for Bit Source’s 22-week traineeships through its Hiring Our Miners Everyday (HOME) program, which gets $11.3 million from the Labor Department. Around 2,300 laid-off coal workers are enrolled.
The EKCEP is trying to create a local IT culture by working with community colleges to provide online courses that can be completed in months instead of a four-year degree, and intensive coding camps. EKCEP has found opportunities for workers outside the region, such as at Toyota’s manufacturing plant outside of Lexington in Kentucky’s more prosperous Bluegrass region. But many workers would rather remain in Appalachia.
Access to broadband, however, does not always translate into better education, Michigan State’s LaRose warned, and greater exposure outside the local community sometimes makes people “less satisfied with where they live.”
“When that’s all done, will the new knowledge workers stay around and/or is rural Kentucky a place that will attract tele-workers?”
Jack Duff, who manages a tele-works training hub in Hazard that has placed laid-off coal workers in jobs from customer service to billing, thinks it will.
“Our coal industry is going down,” Duff said. “One thing I’ve learned – and I am a old decrepit buzzard – is you’ve got to keep moving forward. Our people have to adapt.” (Reporting by Valerie Volcovici; Editing by Frances Kerry and Grant McCool)
Originally posted on U.S. Marijuana Party of Kentucky:
The following synopsis which I have found across the internet and put together here pretty much sums up the value of our “legalization” initiatives, whether they be “anti-prohibition”, tax and regulate, Repeal, ‘…”my God given right!”, or “Damn, we are all a bunch of fools to think that prohibition has ended…”.
With the passage of the new recreational and medical cannabis use laws in Colorado and Washington alongside all of the other “medical cannabis” states, everyone is/was jumping for joy at midnight on the 31st of December 2013. Prohibition has ended they proclaim, yet still remains illegal at the Federal and U.N. levels. The U.N. has already jumped on the bandwagon prior to the new year to make sure that Uruguay’s legalization was “in violation of international law”.
The Executive Branch of our U.S. Government seems to be just sitting back and watching, never giving a clear…
View original 2,078 more words
Originally posted on Political Vel Craft:
Earlier this month the State Supreme Court of West Virginia dealt a huge blow to the biotech company Monsanto, ordering it to pay $93 million to the small town of Nitro, West Virginia for poisoning local citizens with Agent Orange chemicals.
Approved last year, the details were only recently worked out a few weeks ago as to how the funds would be dispersed.
As mandated in the settlement:
View original 603 more words
Originally posted on pundit from another planet:
Women Are Buying More Guns Than Ever
AWR Hawkins writes: Women have emerged as one of the fastest-growing demographics of new gun buyers and concealed carry permit holders in the country, and in the process, they have become a driving force in the shift in American attitudes from pro-gun control to pro-gun rights.
“This growing participation of women in firearm purchases and firearm-related activities has not happened overnight. Rather, it has been steadily increasing over a number of years.”
In January, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that “women [are] buying more guns than ever.” And the result of this surge in women gun buyers has been an expansion of firearms and firearms accessories made to cater to the female market. Many of the accessories are often designed and marketed by fellow women gun owners.
“The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that this is not only providing new markets for the gun industry and expanding the number of concealed carry…
View original 131 more words
Kentucky GOP Sen. Rand Paul says he’ll try to block last-ditch efforts Sunday to renew NSA and other anti-terrorist and surveillance programs.
“I will force the expiration of the NSA illegal spy program,” Paul, also a 2016 presidential candidate, said Saturday. “I am ready and willing to start the debate on how we fight terrorism without giving up our liberty.”
The Libertarian-minded Paul led a filibuster-like effort over the Memorial Day weekend that helped block legislation to extend federal surveillance efforts but suggested upon leaving the Senate chambers that he might reconsider.
“It depends,” he said. “Sometimes things change as deadlines approach.”
Barring a last-minute deal in Congress, three post-Sept. 11 surveillance laws used against spies and terrorists will expire when Sunday turns into Monday.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has called back the upper chamber for a rare Sunday session to decide on whether to accept a House-passed bill that extends the programs. Congress would then send the measure to President Obama to sign before midnight.
The House’s USA Freedom Act passed overwhelmingly in the Republican-controlled chamber but fell three votes short of the 60 needed to proceed in the Senate. And efforts in the upper chamber to extend the current law also have failed.
Much of the debate has focuses on the National Security Agency’s collection of Americans’ telephone calling records, authorized under one of the expiring provisions, Section 215 of the Patriot Act.
Independent evaluations have cast doubt on that program’s importance, and even law enforcement officials say in private that losing this ability would not carry severe consequences.
Yet the fight over those records has jeopardized other surveillance programs that have broad, bipartisan support and could fall victim to congressional gridlock.
The FBI uses Section 215 to collect other business records tied to specific terrorism investigations.
A separate section in the post-9/11 Patriot Act allows the FBI to eavesdrop, via wiretaps, on suspected terrorists or spies who discard phones to dodge surveillance. A third provision, targeting “lone wolf” attackers, has never been used and thus may not be missed if it lapses.
If the Freedom Act becomes law, the business-records provision and the roving-wiretap authority would return immediately. The NSA would resume collecting American telephone records for a six-month period while shifting to a system of searching phone company records case by case.
If no agreement is reached, all the provisions will expire.
A third possibility is a temporary extension of current law while lawmakers work out a deal, but House members have expressed opposition.
“I have fought for several years now to end the illegal spying of the NSA on ordinary Americans,” Paul also said in a statement released Saturday. “Let me be clear: I acknowledge the need for a robust intelligence agency and for a vigilant national security. I believe we must fight terrorism. … But we do not need to give up who we are to defeat them.”
Failure to pass the legislation would mean new barriers for the government in domestic, national-security investigations, at a time when intelligence officials say the threat at home is growing.
Government and law enforcement officials, including Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, have said in recent days that letting the wiretap and business records provisions expire would undercut the FBI’s ability to investigate terrorism and espionage.
Lynch said it would mean “a serious lapse in our ability to protect the American people.” Clapper said in a statement Friday that prompt passage by the Senate of the House bill “is the best way to minimize any possible disruption of our ability to protect the American people.”
And President Obama used his weekly radio and Internet address Saturday to accuse opponents of hijacking the debate for political reasons. “Terrorists like al Qaeda and ISIL aren’t suddenly going to stop plotting against us at midnight tomorrow, and we shouldn’t surrender the tools that help keep us safe,” he said, using an acronym for the Islamic State group.
Civil liberties activists say the pre-Sept. 11 law gives the FBI enough authority to do its job. To bolster their case, they cite a newly released and heavily blacked out report by the Justice Department’s internal watchdog that examined the FBI’s use up to 2009 of business record collection under Section 215.
“The government has numerous other tools, including administrative and grand jury subpoenas, which would enable it to gather necessary information,” in terrorism investigations, the American Civil Liberties Union said in a statement.
Section 215 allows the FBI to serve a secret order requiring a business to hand over records relevant to a terrorism or espionage investigation. The FBI uses the authority “fewer than 200 times a year,” Director James Comey said last week.
The inspector general’s report said it was used in “investigations of groups comprised of unknown members and to obtain information in bulk concerning persons who are not the subjects of or associated with an authorized FBI investigation.”
But from 2007 to 2009, the report said, none of that material had cracked a specific terrorism case.
The report analyzed several cases, but most of the details are blacked out. In some cases, the FBI agent pronounced the 215 authority “useful” or “effective,” but the context and detail were censored.
Fox News’ Chad Pergram and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
by Joe Sonka
A new study by Harvard University’s Center for Ethics finds that Kentucky’s state government is among the most corrupt in the country, and second to none when it comes to the “legal corruption” of political favors in exchange for campaign contributions.
Whereas the most common measure of corruption uses only federal convictions, the Harvard study measures corruption based on the perceptions of experts, surveying hundreds of news and investigative reporters covering state politics. The reporters ranked the existence of both illegal and legal corruption in the executive, legislative and judicial branches on a scale of 1 to 5, from not common at all to extremely common.
Kentucky was one of only two states to receive the highest ranking of 5 for legal corruption in both the executive and legislative branches, in addition to being near the top for the judicial branch with a ranking of 3 for such corruption being moderately common.
Harvard found Kentucky to be one of only two states where legal corruption in the executive branch is “extremely common”
Kentucky also ranked near the worst for illegal corruption, defined as government officials receiving private gains in exchange for providing specific benefits. The legislative branch in Kentucky was one of 10 where such corruption was perceived to be very common, all receiving the highest scores. Kentucky’s executive branch ranked among the five worst, with illegal corruption perceived as between moderately common and very common. Judicial branch corruption in Kentucky was only slightly common with a ranking of 2, though only California had a worse ranking with 2.5.
Factoring in all of the responses, the Harvard study ranked Kentucky the third worst in the country for illegal corruption, and the very worst for legal corruption – meaning it is perceived as even more corrupt than Illinois and New Jersey, commonly know as two state governments with the worst history of corruption. (Louisiana, another state with a poor reputation, was not included, as no reporters from the state responded to the survey.)
Rep. Keith Hall, D-Phelps, was indicted in October for allegedly giving $46,000 worth of bribes to a state mine inspector to ignore environmental regulations his coal company violated. Kentucky instituted sweeping ethics reforms after the BOPTROT scandal from the early-1990s sent 15 state legislators to prison, including the speaker of the house, though the perception of corruption within the halls of Frankfort has not vanished – at least among the press corps. While other rankings of corruption find many states worse off than Kentucky, at least our political media is on its toes and not taking anyone at their word.
* Text describing the map above previously referred to the legislative branch
Joe Sonka is a staff writer at Insider Louisville. He is a former news editor at LEO Weekly and founder of the Kentucky political blog Barefoot & Progressive. Sonka also has written for The Nation, ThinkProgress and RH Reality Check, and is occasionally a talking head on MSNBC sharing his …
TPP stands for "Trans-Pacific Partnership"…it’s a trade deal that is expected to drive down the wages of 90 percent of all Americans.
WHAT IS TPP?
TPP stands for “Trans-Pacific Partnership”…it’s a trade deal that is expected to drive down the wages of 90 percent of all Americans.
600 corporations have banded together–controlling 40 percent of all global trade–they will be able to extract whatever resources they want from our country…and if we complain, offshore tribunals will decide our fate.
TPP also plans to use copyright law to effectively shut down our internet.
Americans will be competing for jobs in a market that pays less than min. wage, our environment may be poisoned by lawless, offshore, transnational companies, prices for medical care will be inflated and food safety will be practically non-existent.
The U.S. is essentially being colonized by 600 transnational companies–which are collectively operating like a “nation state.”
If you don’t want most of the U.S. to experience Detroit-like poverty…please get involved:
Call your Representatives and join actions, ASAP, to STOP TPP and demand NO FAST TRACK.
Thank you. ♥
“Congress Moves to Fast Track TPP, Threatening Human Health and Environment”
“The TPP agreement could devastate communities…It would elevate corporations to the level of nations, thus allowing foreign companies to directly sue governments in private trade tribunals over laws and policies that corporations allege reduce their profits. It would also open the floodgates for the expansion of natural gas exports and, therefore, fracking across the U.S. [also, affect radiation monitoring, nuclear power plant safety and our ability to protect ourselves from any environmental disaster.]”
“On behalf of the Sierra Club and our 2.1 million members and supports, I urge members to oppose this fast-track bill and retain their right to ensure that the U.S. trades responsibly.”
“Scientists have traditionally held a range of contrasting views on the extent to which they should be involved in the political decision-making process. Many of us feel that, in return for the public funding we receive to carry out our research, we have to produce impartial knowledge that can be used by policy makers, but otherwise we should not be involved as scientists in political debates. However, when politicians devise policies that risk annihilating the societal impact of our work, some of us claim the right to be outspoken, as the two of us do in the following…”
ACLU: “The Biggest Threat to Free Speech and Intellectual Property That You’ve Never Heard Of”
“The TPP [Trans-Pacific Partnership] is often referred to by critics as ‘NAFTA on steroids,’ and would establish a free trade zone that would stretch from Vietnam to Chile, encompassing 800 million people — about a third of world trade and nearly 40 percent of the global economy. While the text of the treaty has been largely negotiated behind closed doors and, until June, kept secret from Congress, more than 600 corporate advisers reportedly have access to the measure, including employees of Halliburton and Monsanto. ‘This is not mainly about trade,’ says Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch. ‘It is a corporate Trojan horse. The agreement has 29 chapters, and only five of them have to do with trade. The other 24 chapters either handcuff our domestic governments, limiting food safety, environmental standards, financial regulation, energy and climate policy, or establishing new powers for corporations.'”
TPP = “NAFTA on steriods” + SOPA
TPP – Wikileaks has released another bombshell
LEAKED TPP DOCUMENTS:
WEBPAGES WITH MORE DETAILS:
Click links on left side for various issues: http://www.exposethetpp.org/TPPImpactsYou.html
HOW TO LOCATE AND CALL REPRESENTATIVES:
Congressional Switchboard: 202-224-3121
(Ask to be transferred to your Rep/Sen)
To find your specific Rep/Sen: http://www.contactingthecongress.org/
“Hi, this is (your full name). I am a constituent of Rep/Senator (name). I live in (name of city). I am calling to request that Rep/Sen (name) vote NO on Fast Track Authority. It is important to me that Congress follows the Constitutional directive to negotiate international trade and that all trade agreements are given full consideration, debate and amendments as needed.
Do you know Rep/Sen (name) position on Fast Track Authority? Will he/she vote Yes or No? (wait for an answer)
Do you know Rep/Sen (name) position on the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement? Will he/she vote Yes or No? (wait for an answer)
(regardless of their response, just continue)
Once again, I am requesting that Rep/Sen (name) vote NO on Fast Track Authority and NO on the TPP! Please be sure he/she gets my message. Thank you.”
http://tinyurl.com/mzk3346 (<–This is my favorite list of flyers. Click photo, then, scroll down description for excellent list! ♥ )
TPP Flyer – GMO, Food Safety, Environment http://wetlands-preserve.org/phpUpload/uploads/Monsanto_Flier_Oct_2012.pdf
More Fliers – Expose The TPP.USA http://mam-lb.com/tpp-fast-track-flyers/
Like the mam fliers, digital links but no url links https://scontent-b-sjc.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/s720x720/1146658_566904673366152_231249949_n.jpg
TPP Flyer – Citizen’s Trade https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/52820359/TPP-handout.pdf
Public Citizen Flyer http://stopptpp.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/tpp_corporatepowertool.pdf
TPP Flyer United Students for Fair Trade http://fairtradecampus.files.wordpress.com/2013/07/tpp-general-info-flyer_-simplified.pdf
Occucard Flyer http://www.occucards.com/images2/tpp-full.jpg
TPP – GMO Flyer http://tinyurl.com/TPPGMOFlyer
TPP Flyer – Food Safety/Fracking/Wall Street/Secret Tribunals – Food & Water Watch http://documents.foodandwaterwatch.org/doc/Don%27t_Fast_Track_Fracking_and_Unsafe_Food.pdf
Old event related fliers http://stoptpp.org/artandflyers/
“STOP TPP” MEME LIBRARY:
http://tinyurl.com/mpwk2cy (tweet form)
http://tinyurl.com/k8hnshh (original links)
WRITE A LETTER TO THE EDITOR (IN MINUTES):
FIND OUT IF YOUR REPRESENTATIVE IS LISTED ON THE “TPP WALL OF SHAME”:
A LIST OF TPP CORPORATE “INSIDERS”:
YALE UNIVERSITY ~ FREE ONLINE CLASS
“ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS AND LAW”:
PLEASE SHARE THIS MEME, WIDELY
(it’s a quick summary of our call team’s activities):
PLEASE ADD YOUR FACEBOOK FRIENDS TO THIS EVENT!
Click “Invite” icon (on top right corner of this event page)–>Click “Choose Friends”–>Very important–click “All Friends,” in left column…then, click each friend, individually! –>”Send Invites” (you should see this icon on bottom right of the pop-up menu)!
If you simply share the event, only about 1-10 percent will see this event in your newsfeed–whereas, if you add friends individually to our event, all of them will receive a notification! ♥
FINALLY, WE ALSO PERIODICALLY TWITTER STORM, PROVIDE UPDATES AND ORGANIZE ADDITIONAL STOP TPP/NO FAST TRACK EVENTS…SO ALWAYS CHECK BACK!
US Senate approves fast-track trade authority for Obama
8 hours ago
Washington (AFP) – The US Senate overcame bitter divisions on trade policy and passed legislation that gives President Barack Obama authority to swiftly forge international trade pacts, including a landmark Pacific Rim accord under negotiation.
- Senate Democrats block Obama on free-trade initiative AFP
- Senate votes to grant Obama fast-track power on trade deals Reuters
- Obama’s trade agenda dealt setback after Senate Democrats revolt MarketWatch
- Senate Democrats gang up to delay fast-track trade bill Reuters
- White House says hopes U.S. Senate can work through trade bill ‘snafu’ Reuters
The measure now heads to the House of Representatives where its fate is uncertain.
While Senate passage is a dramatic victory for Obama, the bill clearly faces a fierce debate in the lower chamber, where lawmakers signalled there is intense opposition from within Obama’s own Democratic Party.
Passage of the so-called trade promotion authority bill allows the administration to finalize negotiations with 11 other Asian and Pacific nations and bring the trade deal to Congress for an up-or-down vote, with lawmakers not permitted to make changes.
The bill, which pushes Obama’s top legislative priority in his second term, passed on a 62-37 vote, with all but a handful of Republicans backing their rival in the White House.
TPA is “likely the most important bill we’ll pass this year,” said Senate Finance Committee chairman Orrin Hatch, who co-wrote the legislation that lays out 150 ambitious US trade priorities including human rights, environment and labor protections.
US President Barack Obama speaks about trade policy at Nike Headquarters on May 8, 2015 in Beaverton …
“It shows that when the president is right we will support him.”
But most Democrats voted no, highlighting some of their fiercest opposition to Obama in his six-plus years in office.
Senate Democrat Jeff Merkley crystalized the sentiments of many free-trade critics, who say the accord will promote a hemorrhaging of American jobs, much like the North American Free Trade Agreement is blamed for doing a generation earlier.
“We have lost five million jobs and 50,000 factories,” Merkley told his colleagues. “This is simply the wrong direction to go.”
Supporters said the Pacific trade accord — the largest in history — will eliminate trade tariffs and level the playing field for US exports.
Demonstrators protest against legislation to give US President Barack Obama fast-track authority to …
And TPA will ensure the most progressive framework of any global trade deal, they said.
– ‘Strong standards’ –
Obama offered swift praise for the result of the closely watched vote.
He stressed that this TPA, previous versions of which were used by several presidents before him to conclude trade deals, includes “strong standards that will advance workers’ rights, protect the environment, promote a free and open Internet, and it supports new robust measures to address unfair currency practices.”
Obama encouraged timely action in the House, but Republican leadership there essentially warned that passage would be up to Obama’s own party.
“The House will take up this measure, and Republicans will do our part, but ultimately success will require Democrats putting politics aside and doing what’s best for the country,” House Speaker John Boehner said after the Senate vote.
And some conservative Republicans, too, could revolt, unwilling to cede ever more power to the executive branch.
Amid a tense series of Senate votes, lawmakers rejected several amendments to the trade bill, including a controversial provision requiring enforceable measures to punish nations which manipulate their currency in order to gain price advantages for their exports to the United States.
Senator Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, headquarters of the US auto industry, argued that the currency intervention by the Bank of Japan, for example, was creating a difference of between $6,000 and $11,000 in the cost of an American automobile there.
Hatch nevertheless warned such a measure would “kill” TPA and the trade deal itself, which is a cornerstone of Obama’s pivot to Asia and would economically link countries as diverse as Australia, Chile, Japan, Peru and Vietnam.
The Consumer Electronics Association welcomed the Senate’s action.
“This legislation provides a much needed, balanced package that takes into account the realities of the digital economy and Internet era,” the association’s head Gary Shapiro said in a statement.
By Diego Flammini, Farms.com
In an effort to raise awareness about hemp and its place as a sustainable, versatile and profitable agricultural product, the Hemp Industries Association (HIA) and Vote Hemp are putting together the 6th annual Hemp History Week, set to take place from June 1st – 7th, 2015.
The weeklong celebration, whose theme is “Sow the Seed” will highlight the many different industries that can benefit from hemp crops including manufacturing and cooking.
It will also highlight the spring planting and progress in the states that already allow large-scale hemp farms.
One of, and perhaps the main issue affecting hemp’s place as an agricultural commodity is that it’s closely associated with marijuana.
Here are some things that set hemp apart from marijuana:
- While both marijuana and hemp are classified as the Cannabis sativa, hemp is taller and has less than 0.3% of THC, the chemical responsible for the effects of marijuana.
- When hemp is grown and harvested on a large scale and used for things like oil, wax, soap, rope and paper, it can be classified as agricultural or industrial hemp.
According to the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, retail sales of all hemp-based products in the United States could be worth approximately $300 million per year.
In 1938, Popular Mechanics deemed hemp the new billion-dollar crop.
Currently there are 13 states in the US that allow for commercial hemp farming: California, Colorado, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia and West Virginia.
Tell us your thoughts about Hemp History Week and the events taking place. If you’re a hemp farmer, what are some of the myths that need to be dispelled surrounding hemp?
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Originally posted on Whatever:
Being poor is knowing exactly how much everything costs.
Being poor is getting angry at your kids for asking for all the crap they see on TV.
Being poor is having to keep buying $800 cars because they’re what you can afford, and then having the cars break down on you, because there’s not an $800 car in America that’s worth a damn.
Being poor is hoping the toothache goes away.
Being poor is knowing your kid goes to friends’ houses but never has friends over to yours.
Being poor is going to the restroom before you get in the school lunch line so your friends will be ahead of you and won’t hear you say “I get free lunch” when you get to the cashier.
Being poor is living next to the freeway.
Being poor is coming back to the car with your children in the back seat, clutching…
View original 790 more words
I have been practicing criminal law for 24 years and have seen a wide variety of reactions by people who are being arrested. Some of these reactions are unwise but understandable. Others are self defeating to the point of being bizarre. No one plans to be arrested, but it might help to think just once about what you will do and not do if you ever hear the phrase “Put your hands behind you.” The simplest “to do” rule is to do what you are told. Simple, but somehow it often escapes someone who is either scared or intoxicated. More important to guarding your rights and interests are ten things you SHOULD NOT do:
1. Don’t try to convince the officer of your innocence. It’s useless. He or she only needs “probable cause” to believe you have committed a crime in order to arrest you. He does not decide your guilt and he actually doesn’t care if you are innocent or not. It is the job of the judge or jury to free you if he is wrong. If you feel that urge to convince him he’s made a mistake, remember the overwhelming probability that instead you will say at least one thing that will hurt your case, perhaps even fatally. It is smarter to save your defense for your lawyer.
2. Don’t run. It’s highly unlikely a suspect could outrun ten radio cars converging on a block in mere seconds. I saw a case where a passenger being driven home by a drunk friend bolted and ran. Why? It was the driver they wanted, and she needlessly risked injury in a forceful arrest. Even worse, the police might have suspected she ran because she had a gun, perhaps making them too quick to draw their own firearms. Most police will just arrest a runner, but there are some who will be mad they had to work so hard and injure the suspect unnecessarily.
3. Keep quiet. My hardest cases to defend are those where the suspect got very talkative. Incredibly, many will start babbling without the police having asked a single question. My most vivid memory of this problem was the armed robbery suspect who blurted to police: “How could the guy identify me? The robbers was wearing masks.” To which the police smiled and responded, “Oh? Were they?” Judges and juries will discount or ignore what a suspect says that helps him, but give great weight to anything that seems to hurt him. In 24 years of criminal practice, I could count on one hand the number of times a suspect was released because of what he told the police after they arrested him.
4. Don’t give permission to search anywhere. If they ask, it probably means they don’t believe they have the right to search and need your consent. If you are ordered to hand over your keys, state loudly “You do NOT have my permission to search.” If bystanders hear you, whatever they find may be excluded from evidence later. This is also a good reason not to talk, even if it seems all is lost when they find something incriminating.
5. If the police are searching your car or home, don’t look at the places you wish they wouldn’t search. Don’t react to the search at all, and especially not to questions like “Who does this belong to?”
6. Don’t resist arrest. Above all, do not push the police or try to swat their hands away. That would be assaulting an officer and any slight injury to them will turn your minor misdemeanor arrest into a felony. A petty shoplifter can wind up going to state prison that way. Resisting arrest (such as pulling away) is merely a misdemeanor and often the police do not even charge that offense. Obviously, striking an officer can result in serious injury to you as well.
7. Try to resist the temptation to mouth off at the police, even if you have been wrongly arrested. Police have a lot of discretion in what charges are brought. They can change a misdemeanor to a felony, add charges, or even take the trouble to talk directly to the prosecutor and urge him to go hard on you. On the other hand, I have seen a client who was friendly to the police and talked sports and such on the way to the station. They gave him a break. Notice he did not talk about his case, however.
8. Do not believe what the police tell you in order to get you to talk. The law permits them to lie to a suspect in order to get him to make admissions. For example, they will separate two friends who have been arrested and tell the first one that the second one squealed on him. The first one then squeals on the second, though in truth the second one never said anything. An even more common example is telling a suspect that if he talks to the police, “it will go easier”. Well, that’s sort of true. It will be much easier for the police to prove their case. I can’t remember too many cases where the prosecutor gave the defendant an easier deal because he waived his right to silence and confessed.
9. If at home, do not invite the police inside, nor should you “step outside”. If the police believe you have committed a felony, they usually need an arrest warrant to go into your home to arrest you. If they ask you to “step outside”, you will have solved that problem for them. The correct responses are: “I am comfortable talking right here.”, “No, you may not come in.”, or “Do you have a warrant to enter or to arrest me in my home?” I am not suggesting that you run. In fact, that is the best way to ensure the harshest punishment later on. But you may not find it so convenient to be arrested Friday night when all the courts and law offices are closed. With an attorney, you can perhaps surrender after bail arrangements are made and spend NO time in custody while your case is pending.
10. If you are arrested outside your home, do not accept any offers to let you go inside to get dressed, change, get a jacket, call your wife, or any other reason. The police will of course escort you inside and then search everywhere they please, again without a warrant. Likewise decline offers to secure your car safely.
That’s it: Ten simple rules that will leave as many of your rights intact as possible if you are arrested.
How about a short test? You have a fight with your live-in girlfriend and the police come and find you on the sidewalk two houses down from the apartment. The girlfriend points you out and the police arrest you for assault. They tell you they don’t intend to question you. They just want your name and address. Do you answer? Well, you shouldn’t. Your address is the single most damaging admission you could make. If you admit living with her, you have just converted a misdemeanor assault into a felony punishable by state prison. When you are arrested it is their game, and you don’t know the rules. It is best to be silent and let the attorney handle it later. The bottom line is that if the police have enough evidence to arrest, they will. If they don’t have that evidence, you could easily provide it by talking.
This article was authored by Brian Dinday, a member of the California Bar, with an office in San Francisco, California.
Read more: http://www.freeadvice.com/resources/articles/arrest_donts_dinday.htm#ixzz3a4cQwbTK
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Dear Mrs. Krider:
Thank you for contacting me with your thoughts on marijuana. Your views help me represent Kentucky and the nation in the United States Senate.
In your correspondence, you expressed your thoughts on rescheduling marijuana from its current status as a Schedule I controlled substance. Kentuckians continue to combat the negative consequences associated with the cultivation and distribution of marijuana in communities across the state. According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, in 2013, approximately 440,000 plants were eradicated in the Commonwealth, over $745,000 worth of assets were seized, and more than 85 weapons were taken off the streets as a result of the marijuana eradication operations. Kentucky carries the dubious distinction of ranking as one of the top marijuana producing states in the nation. Traffickers have been known to trespass on both private and public lands, often resulting in damage to private property and many of the Commonwealth’s most cherished natural habitats.
That is why I recently invited Michael Botticelli, Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, also known as the “Drug Czar,” to attend a forum in Northern Kentucky to hear firsthand accounts of the devastating impact of prescription drug and heroin abuse in the Commonwealth. Along with bringing him to the Commonwealth, I continue working to provide law enforcement with the tools and resources they need to combat drug abuse; this effort has included advocating on behalf of several Kentucky counties to ensure their successful inclusion into the Appalachia High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, which qualifies them for additional federal assistance to combat drug trafficking threats.
There is no doubt that drug abuse persists as a serious problem in all 120 counties of the Commonwealth, and the effects of such abuse have proved devastating for our local communities. Because of the harm that substances like marijuana and other illegal drugs pose to our society, I oppose their legalization. That said, I will keep your thoughts in mind as the 114th Congress progresses.
Again, thank you for contacting me about this important matter. If you would like to receive periodic updates from my office, please sign up for my eNewsletter at http://www.mcconnell.senate.gov, become a fan of my page on Facebook by visiting http://www.facebook.com/mitchmcconnell or follow my office on Twitter @McConnellPress. In the meantime, I hope you will continue to keep me informed of issues important to you.
UNITED STATES SENATOR
Written by: Cindy Spencer
July 27, 2013
What ever happened to the land of the free?
He was certainly one of the brave.
There was no judge or jury. No trial. Just a death sentence. Handed down by Uncle Sam.
Let’s go back a few years for a little history? My father was born in 1949. He was the youngest of three. He lost his mother very prematurely at the very early age of 12. Soon after his father remarried a very hateful and manipulative woman who had no use for her new husband’s dead wife’s baby boy. His older brother and sister were old enough to be out on their own. He was not. So he was shuffled around a bit between various relatives, meanwhile mourning the loss of his mother and now essentially his father. Add to that, the struggles of coping with having to learn to live without the affections of a mother for her baby boy, and the sting of being discarded by his father when he needed him the most, just to please this new “woman” for lack of a better word, who wanted absolutely nothing around to remind her husband of his first wife.
Now let’s move on to June of 1967 when he began his enlistment into the United States Army. He went thru the training and arrived in Vietnam July 5 1969. My father never spoke much off his time in Vietnam, as doing so sent him back there, and as many Vietnam vets tell me, they’d do almost anything to keep from “going there”. From what I gather, he was, at least for part of the time, the man the carried the communication device in that kept them connected to base, in which air strikes were called in. because of this, I am quite sure he was definitely one that the enemy would try to “take out”. But really, weren’t they attempting to take them all out? Which they nearly did. He also spoke of the feeling of Agent Orange as it fell and landed on his skin. That their own government poisoned them with. He spent 1 year over there, and returned to the states June 19 1970. I think, it is despicable, no, criminal the way our soldiers were treated upon their return. I also firmly believe that was akin to a secondary wounding, except on friendly soil. I cannot imagine what my father and all those others must have felt after what they had gone thru in an attempt to survive while fighting for their country only to be called baby killers and be spat upon by the very people they were dying to protect. It makes me so angry.
So, now we go to February 1971 when he weds my mother. He loved her with all the love he had to give. He was definitely wounded in the war, but because his injuries weren’t visible yet, he was not treated, much like many, many others for PTSD. But he most definitely had it. He and my mother started their family with my birth in December of 1972. Then was my brother in March 1976. Then was my sister in January 1978. And last but not least, was another brother in February 1980. So here he was with a wife and four kids. With no education other than combat training, he worked long hard hours setting up mobile homes for minimum wage. Which obviously didn’t go too far with a family of 6. He and my mother struggled long and hard. It took a toll on their marriage, but they stuck it out, for now any way. But he had begun to self medicate with alcohol and marijuana that he was introduced to in Vietnam. This went on with all life’s ups and downs for many years until the kids were raised. It was quite violent at times because of the alcohol.
After my baby brother graduated high school in 2000, he joined the United States Air Force. By now my dads drinking was daily. He was a very small man weighing in at 119 for most of his life. It didn’t take much and he would be pretty loaded. As long as he drank just beer he really wasn’t as bad. It was when the liquor entered the picture that all of his sense, reason, and self control left the building. This was a huge problem and almost broke our family up for good. Around 2002 my mother had taken all the abuse she could handle, and I mean emotional, and verbal. It only got completely physical once that I know of. And my mom was always slightly bigger than my dad, until recently that is, so she could hold her own, until he pulled the guns that is. I lived with them at this time, as my marriage had fallen apart, and I could not afford to remain on my own for many reasons. So my mom left him. Then it got real bad, he grew more and more depressed. He had been seeing a local backwoods dr. forever for whenever he got sick, and for his “nerves”. That dr. had him on some pretty powerful pills for over 20 years. 2mg of Ativan several times a day. I know he needed something, and they definitely helped him, but it wasn’t nearly enough. This entire time he used marijuana regularly. I truly believe it saved us all at times, not just his life.
He honestly never knew that he could go to the VA for his medical treatment the whole time. But in 2003, after essentially “running his wife off”, in his mind, and trying to work with all the flashbacks he suffered because he couldn’t medicate at work, in my opinion that is, he quit his job at a very small cabinet shop where he sprayed finish. A friend of his talked him into riding with him to an appointment at the VA. So while he was there he saw someone who talked him into checking in to get off alcohol. Unfortunately after he did, the stopped his Ativan cold turkey and he had 2 Grand Mal seizures that resulted in a fall and a fractured skull. He went thru an ordeal, but emerged a recovering alcoholic. He was also off the Ativan, and no other medicine of that nature ever took its place. He even stopped smoking marijuana. For a while. But after returning home, alone, except for me being there with him in the day. He knew he would be drinking in no time if he didn’t at least smoke. The dr. at the VA refused to give him any medicine that was controlled, as she had labeled him from the word go, as a drug seeker. Which was completely untrue. He was self medicated. It was his only choice.
It took him and my mom some hard work, but they started over in a new place in 2007. He had finally gotten his pension money for a service connected disability that he had suffered for years. And he wanted to buy the woman he loved a nice home for them to start the next chapter in their lives. He never got drunk again. As it turned out he had awesome will power once he was treated for PTSD thru counseling, antidepressants, and mostly “medicinal use marijuana”.
Not too long after they got in the new place, my dad was surveying the wood on his land on his 4 wheeler, and as he went over a large tree root, the 4 wheeler tilted some and he instinctively threw his leg out to catch himself, and “snap” broke his leg. My mom panicking, of course, got my brother to help, and called 911 to come get him. In all the commotion, it never occurred to anyone to remove a marijuana cigarette from his shirt pocket. After they rushed him to the hospital, and began assessing his injuries, and I’m a little foggy on how, but hospital staff observed the marijuana cigarette, and alerted the law. They came, and charged him with the possession of it. Well he was in the hospital a while, but after he got out, he went to court when his paper said to, and thru confusion, they didn’t have him on the docket or something to that affect, and after thorough checking, my parents went home. Here is where it gets interesting. After someone somewhere somehow really “effed” something up, and charged him with being a fugitive from justice. They never came to arrest him at home, which is where he was confined with a broken leg, instead they called him at home from the VA to tell him his money would stop because he was a fugitive. He asked them how on earth he was a fugitive when they called him at home to tell him this. Well he had to get an expensive lawyer to fight the erroneous charges, which he did when, but not before they stopped his money for several months until it was straightened out.
So, even after all that, he still kept his appointments, trying now to be treated for the pain he was constantly experiencing as a result of the broken leg and subsequent placement of a steel bar. Well, of course that wasn’t going to happen, after all, he was already branded with “the scarlet label”. Only now, he was under the impression that if he continued to smoke, without admitting himself for another 28 day stay, he may again risk losing his income. That, in my opinion, should be criminal. So, fearing losing his money, again, he slacked of going to the VA. He was in a no win situation. His appointments became fewer and farther between. After all, he had tried to be as compliant as possible while maintaining some sort of tolerable balance between mood stabilizers, anti depressants, whatever ineffective pain med they may send, and his old faithful plant that grows from the ground that God himself put here for us to use.
Now, here we are to 2012. He had been feeling down, and tired, and must have been in excruciating pain, but didn’t let on too much to us. He was spending more and more time in bed. We at first thought he was depressed, as he had been before. But when he didn’t respond as he normally did, we began to urge him to let us take him to the dr. he refused. He said they would just treat him like he was looking for drugs, and he was so tired of that. Couple more months passed by, and he made himself get up more, but I think it was so we would quit trying to get him to go to the dr. Well on Friday, July 13, 2012 my mom called me upset saying she couldn’t get him to wake up good, and would I come over and help her make him go to the hospital. So we raced over, and got him up and dressed, and I asked him if I could call an ambulance. He said no. so my mom drove him, and my son and I followed.
From this point things went really fast. So fast, that it is almost a blur. I want to say that it was around 7:30 pm when the dr. came in and asked my dad if he wanted the news with us in there or if he wanted his privacy. My dad said”just lay it on me”. She said “Mr. Spencer, you have cancer. It is esophageal cancer and has spread to your lungs, your liver, and your lymph nodes.” I’m sorry to say that I am unaware of what she said next, as I quickly turned to step out of his view so he wouldn’t have to see my face as I fell apart. I’ve always been daddy’s girl, and have been by his side for a lot of things. I could not face him for a while after that, as I didn’t want him to be anymore afraid than I knew he must already be. He had always feared cancer. Kind of like he somehow knew that would be what got him. The next few days were filled with sobs and drs. And swollen faces, and family members we hadn’t seen in years. This was really it. I begged them to explain why we couldn’t try to treat it, even though I knew.
My father, James R. Spencer, who fought in the deadliest war in our history, died on July 18 2012 at 12:16 am. Just 4 and a half days after being diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic esophageal cancer. Think about that as I have had to. He battled unimaginable pain and sickness for god only knows how long without the benefit of modern medicine to at the very least ease some of his pain, and for what? He deserved to be treated like a human being. If for no other reason than he was. But he was a Vietnam War veteran with honorable discharge. Why was he treated like a drug seeker just for being sick with a disease he got BECAUSE he fought for this country? I am so angry. I cannot for the life of me ever remember hearing of anyone who battled what had to have been years of terminal cancer without so much as the mildest pain pill. He did not deserve to suffer like that. All because of the fear that was instilled in him by the Veterans Administration that he would lose his ability to support his wife and put food on the table once he lost his income because he chose a god given flower to calm his troubled mind, and ease some of his suffering once it was evident that he would not receive adequate treatment from the VA for an illness that he did not bring on himself.
This was senseless almost manslaughter. I may not be a lawyer, nor am I a dr. but I am a human being, and I am an American. I have just as much right to be heard as anyone else. This country is falling apart. Why won’t government open their eyes to see what they are doing to America’s people? Can someone out there help me? It is now my life’s mission to spread my father’s story to anyone who will hear, and especially to those who wouldn’t. It is those that are single minded about the subject that have cost me and my children our father and grandfather. maybe someday we can change enough minds to make sure that this Vietnam veteran hero didn’t die in vain!! That thru his story, never again would something like this happen to any American!
Thank you for your time,
Cynthia Spencer Mitchell
Originally posted on TIME:
The number of new HIV infections in Scott County, Indiana, has risen to 142, prompting local and state officials to call it a public-health emergency.
A new report released by the federal and state health officials on Friday reveals disturbing trends in injection drug use in a county of only 4,200 people. Scott County has historically reported less than five new cases of HIV each year, making the new tally of 142 all the more alarming. Health experts say the recent outbreak is reflective of a growing drug epidemic nationwide.
“There are children, and parents and grandparents who live in the same house who are injecting drugs together sort of as a community activity,” said Dr. Joan Duwve, the chief medical consultant for the Indiana State Department of Health, at a press briefing. “This community, like many rural communities, especially those along the Ohio River and Kentucky and West Virginia…
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By Andrew V. Pestano | April 22, 2015 at 9:34 AM
introduced a bill Tuesday to extend the controversial Patriot Act and its surveillance provisions until 2020.
The extension would allow the National Security Agency to continue to collect data of millions on U.S. phone records daily. The NSA does so under the authority of Section 215, which allows for secret court orders to collect “tangible things” that could be used by the government in investigations.
The Patriot Act was enacted after the Sept. 11 attacks to combat terrorism. McConnell used a Senate rule that will take the bill’s extension straight to the floor for voting, a move that would bypass traditional committee vetting process.
Section 215 expires on June 1. The NSA’s mass collection program was revealed by former contractor Edward Snowden, sparking a debate about privacy, security and the reach of government surveillance.
“Despite overwhelming consensus that the bulk collection of Americans’ phone records under Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act must end, Senate Republican leaders are proposing to extend that authority without change,” Sen. Patrick J. Leahy, D-Vt., said in a statement. “This tone deaf attempt to pave the way for five and a half more years of unchecked surveillance will not succeed. I will oppose any reauthorization of Section 215 that does not contain meaningful reforms.”
Leahy and a bipartisan group of lawmakers on the House Judiciary Committee are attempting to end the NSA’s mass collection of records. Advocates for privacy condemned McConnell’s extension introduction.
“The Senate majority leader’s bill makes no attempt to protect Americans’ privacy or reform ongoing NSA surveillance programs that do not provide any tangible benefit to national security,” Harley Geiger, policy counsel at the Center for Democracy & Technology, said. “For Americans concerned about government intrusion in their lives, the bill is a kick in the stomach.”
You should control what medicines you use, not the FDA. The FDA should make advisory recommendations only. It should NOT have the power to mandate which drugs you can buy, and which you cannot.
- If pharmaceutical companies value the FDA seal of approval, then they can pay the FDA to evaluate their drugs.
- If consumers value FDA approval, then they can decide to only buy FDA approved drugs.
If the FDA’s seal of approval is really so valuable, then it does NOT need to be mandatory. No coercion is necessary. Instead, the FDA should be able to sell its services through voluntary means, just like Underwriter’s Laboratory does.
Consumers and doctors should be free to consult available science, and make their own decisions about which treatments to try.
All human beings are unique. Treatments that might be dangerous for one person, could be the only possible solution for another. There is zero chance that one-size-fits-all dictates can possibly account for the vastness of human variability. Patients and doctors must have the flexibility to deal with individual human uniqueness.
There are thousands of reasons why the FDA should lose its power to coerce you and your loved ones. Some of these reasons will be listed below, so that you can use them when writing to Congress, or when asking your friends to contact Congress on this issue . . .
The FDA gives consumers a false sense of security. Americans assume that the FDA is actually protecting them, but it is not. For instance . . .
The Union of Concerned Scientists surveyed 6,000 FDA scientists in 2006, and 1,000 of them responded with the following disturbing admissions:
- 17% admitted that they had been “asked explicitly by FDA decision makers to provide incomplete, inaccurate, or misleading information to the public, regulated industry, media, or elected/senior government officials.”
- Less than half agreed that the FDA “routinely provides complete and accurate information to the public.”
- 47% admitted to being aware of instances “where commercial interests have inappropriately induced or attempted to induce the reversal, withdrawal, or modification of FDA determinations of actions.”
The FDA is constantly attempting to expand its powers. The people in that agency are relentlessly pushing into areas that are NOT part of their mandate — even where there is NO problem that needs to be fixed.
For Example: The FDA has made repeated attempts to regulate vitamins and supplements, even though there is no evidence that these things present any danger. Quite the contrary — vitamins and supplements are a powerful example of how health outcomes can be improved, without FDA involvement. The website of the Life Extension Foundation is full of scientific citations to demonstrate this. For instance . . .
A review of 2009 information for “adverse events” reported to the national control center’s data system shows that, NO major adverse events or deaths were reported for . . .
- Botanical supplements like St. John’s wort, ginseng, and Echinacea
- Hormone supplements like DHEA, melatonin, and pregnenolone
- Phytoestrogen supplements
- The joint- and cartilage-support supplements glucosamine and chondroitin
- Vitamins A and E, and only one adverse event each was reported for vitamin B6 and C
In total, 41 major adverse events were reported for the entire spectrum of supplements including botanicals, amino acids, and vitamins, and only one was a death.
In contrast, more than 7,000 major adverse events were reported for pharmaceutical drugs, including a total of 496 deaths. And based on previous studies, we know the overall death rate for physician prescribed drugs to be far higher.
The Downsize DC position is pro-choice. The FDA should serve, not rule.
Use the form at right to send your elected representatives a letter about this issue. It’s easy!
- Your position will be counted by each Congressional office,
- Will educate the Congressional staffer who reads it,
- May be passed up the chain of command,
- May receive a reply (many DC Downsizers get them). If you receive such a letter, please share it with us at Comments@DownsizeDC.org.
Send a letter to Congress
We provide the first few words of the letter so that Congressional offices will see the most important point
right at the start, and so that no one can hijack our system for another purpose.
Here’s the part we provide . . .
Make the FDA advisory, not mandatory.
Posted on April 8, 2015 | By Vivian McPeak
Note: I invited Joy Beckerman to guest blog on this important issue. The opinions expressed are her own. – Vivian
MYTHS & REALITIES OF CROSS-POLLINATION
by Joy Beckerman
Oh, the irony. On the one hand, marijuana and hemp activists have been tortured for decades by the DEA’s exceedingly absurd stance that marijuana growers will use industrial hemp fields to camouflage their marijuana plants; and on the other hand, there has recently arisen the hysterical stance by some populations of outdoor marijuana growers that marijuana and industrial hemp fields must be kept extraordinary distances apart in order to avoid cross-pollination. To be sure – whereas the DEA stance is unequivocally non-factual and has no basis in reality, the cross-pollination hysteria is actually grounded in truth, albeit recently a distorted and emotionally-based version of the truth. Greed inspires irrationality. Let’s have an intelligent conversation based in fact because there is no need for hysteria and cross-pollination is a common agricultural issue with a common agricultural solution…and one that would never require a distance of anywhere in the realm of 200 miles between plant species types. We don’t see the State of Kentucky in an uproar. Make no mistake, Kentucky’s Number One cash crop is outdoor marijuana while Kentucky simultaneously is the country’s Number One industrial hemp producer (both feral [i.e. leftover/wild] and deliberate, now that it is legal to cultivate there).
No doubt it will be helpful to found our discussion on a necessary botany lesson, especially since the most common misunderstanding about the “difference” between marijuana and industrial hemp is that “hemp is ‘the male’ and marijuana is ‘the female.’” In fact, nothing could be farther from the truth. “Cannabis” is the plant genus, “sativa” is Latin for “sown” or “cultivated” (and is included in many scientific plant species names), and the “L.” we often see associated with Cannabis sativa merely stands for the surname initial of Carl Linnaeus, the Swiss botanist who invented taxonomy. Cannabis sativa is a member of the Cannabaceae family. Within the Cannabis sativa plant species, we have the drug type known as “marijuana” and we have the oilseed and fiber type known as “industrial hemp.”
Both plant types – marijuana and industrial hemp – can be dieocious, which is to say they can be either exclusively male or exclusively female; and they can also be monoecious, which is to say they can have the staminate (i.e. the male pollen-producing part) and pistillate (i.e. the female ovum-producing part) on the same plant. However, marijuana is a high-resin crop generally planted about four feet apart for its medicine or narcotic rich leaves and buds, whereas industrial hemp is a low-resin crop generally planted about four inches apart for its versatile stalk and seed. The different kinds of marijuana are classified as “strains” and the different kinds of industrial hemp are classified as “varieties” and “cultivars.”
Industrial hemp is non-psychoactive with a higher ratio of CBD to THC, thus smoking even several acres of it will not result in achieving a high; conversely, only a memorable headache is achieved, regardless of Herculean effort. Marijuana flower production and industrial hemp production cultivation processes are distinctly different. Finally, there is no such thing as a plant or plant species known as “Cannabis hemp” and “hemp” is not a synonym for “marijuana,” “pot,” or “ganja,” etc. Botanists have argued for ages over whether a separate plant species “Cannabis indica” exists, and that age-old debate is not being addressed here.
The significant difference between the two types that effects cross-pollination and legitimately frightens marijuana growers is that hemp plants go to seed fairly quickly and would thus pollinate any marijuana plants growing in the same field or in a nearby field. This is botanically analogous to field corn and sweet corn, one of which is grown for human consumption, and one of which is grown for animal consumption. Corn producers take great measures to prevent any cross-pollination between their field and sweet corns; including growing the different varieties of corn at different times or making sure there is sufficient distance between the different fields. Either way, these corn producers do what is necessary to ensure that pollen carrying the dominant gene for starch synthesis is kept clear of corn silks borne on plants of the recessive (sweet) variety.
Cross-pollination of hemp with marijuana would significantly reduce the potency of the marijuana plants. While hemp farmers are not going to want marijuana cross-pollinating with their hemp and increasing their hemp’s THC content, it would be entirely more disastrous for the marijuana grower if hemp were to cross-pollinate with their marijuana due to the cost of producing and value of selling medical and adult-use marijuana. The concern is real. The concern is valid. But the concern does not merit the level of hysteria that appears to have arisen in Washington. We must take a note from Kentucky.
Industrial hemp is primarily pollinated by wind, and most pollen travels approximately 100 yards, give or take. Bees, of course, can also pollinate hemp; and bees travel up to three miles from their hives. It is also true that, depending on the weight and size of any plant pollen, combined with other natural conditions, wind-borne pollen can technically travel up to 2,000 miles away from the source. Yes, it’s true, up to 2,000 miles. And also it would be beyond ridiculous to give serious agricultural consideration to this extreme factoid for entirely obvious reasons.
Cannabis case in point: Kentucky. Kentucky may not have legal outdoor marijuana grows, but you’d better believe that – like every other state in the nation – there’s a whole lotta marijuana being deliberately cultivated outdoors; and on quite a grand scale in Kentucky, which state learned centuries ago that Cannabis grows exceedingly well in that climate and soil. Kentucky was always been the heart of our nation’s industrial hemp farmlands, thus Kentucky is covered with more feral hemp than any other state. This issue of marijuana and hemp cross-pollination is old news and no news at all to the marijuana growers of Kentucky, who experience and demonstrate no sense of hysteria like that which has risen up in Washington.
Global industrial hemp leader and professional industrial hemp agrologist Prof. Anndrea Hermann, M.Sc, B.GS, P.Ag., who has been a certified Health Canada THC Sampler since 2005 and is the President of the U.S. Hemp Industries Association, has assisted with creating and reviewing hemp regulations in Canada, the European Union, South Africa, Uruguay, Australia, New Zealand, and several U.S. States. Anndrea refers to this issue of cross-pollination as the “Cannabis Clash” and “Cannabis Sex 101.” So what is the answer? What is a safe distance between marijuana and hemp fields?
The Association of Official Seed Certifying Agencies (AOSCA), which is the global agency to which most developed countries subscribe for agricultural purposes, has completed its draft industrial hemp seed certification regulations, which rules include a range from a minimum distance of three (3) feet to a maximum distance of three (3) miles between different pedigrees and cultivars of industrial hemp. This is the same with Health Canada’s industrial hemp regulations. But we are talking about safe distances between two plant types – marijuana and industrial hemp. Absent intense research and collection of hard data that will be interesting to conduct as we move forward and funding becomes available, experts agree that a distance of ten (10) miles between hemp and marijuana fields is exceedingly appropriate to avoid cross-pollination. Or as Anndrea Hermann would say, “a nice, country road drive!”
This is not a complicated issue or a new issue. This is basic agriculture. Marijuana and industrial hemp are best friends and this is no time for them to start picking unnecessary fights with one another. Ten miles, folks; ten miles!
Joy Beckerman is the President Hemp Ace International LLC, and the director of the Hemp Industries Association, Washington Chapter
Rastafarian businessman (Shutterstock)
In a classic case of “unintended consequences,” the recently signed Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) in Indiana may have opened the door for the establishment of the First Church of Cannabis in the Hoosier State.
While Governor Mike Pence (R) was holding a signing ceremony for the bill allowing businesses and individuals to deny services to gays on religious grounds or values, paperwork for the First Church of Cannabis Inc. was being filed with the Secretary of State’s office, reports RTV6.
Church founder Bill Levin announced on his Facebook page that the church’s registration has been approved, writing, “Status: Approved by Secretary of State of Indiana – “Congratulations your registration has been approved!” Now we begin to accomplish our goals of Love, Understanding, and Good Health.”
Levin is currently seeking $4.20 donations towards his non-profit church.
According to Indiana attorney and political commentator Abdul-Hakim Shabazz, Indiana legislators, in their haste to protect the religious values and practices of their constituents, may have unwittingly put the state in an awkward position with those who profess to smoke pot as a religious sacrament.
Shabazz pointed out that it is still illegal to smoke pot in Indiana, but wrote, “I would argue that under RFRA, as long as you can show that reefer is part of your religious practices, you got a pretty good shot of getting off scot-free.”
Noting that RFRA supporters say the bill “only spells out a test as to whether a government mandate would unduly burden a person’s faith and the government has to articulate a compelling interest for that rule and how it would be carried out in the least restrictive manner,” Shabazz contends the law may tie the state’s hands.
“So, with that said, what ‘compelling interest’ would the state of Indiana have to prohibit me from using marijuana as part of my religious practice?” he asked. ” I would argue marijuana is less dangerous than alcohol and wine used in religious ceremonies. Marijuana isn’t any more ‘addictive’ than alcohol and wine is used in some religious ceremonies. And marijuana isn’t any more of a ‘gateway’ drug than the wine used in a religious ceremony will make you go out and buy hard liquor. (At least not on Sunday.)”
Shabazz concluded, “I want a front row seat at the trial that we all know is going to happen when all this goes down.”
Originally posted on U.S. Marijuana Party of Kentucky:
The Obama administration’s so-called “clean power” regulation seeks to shut down more of America’s power generation under the guise of protecting the climate.
In reality, this proposed regulation would have a negligible effect on global climate but a profoundly negative impact on countless American families already struggling.
The regulation is unfair. It’s probably illegal. And state officials can do something about it; in fact, many are already fighting back.
I’m calling for others to join. Here’s why. Every state has the power, in theory at least, to design its own approach to meet the excessive and arbitrary mandates imposed by this regulation. But the purported flexibility is actually illusory.
States report that the regulation’s mandates are not technologically achievable, cannot be implemented under rushed timelines and threaten both state economies and energy reliability for families. Moreover, the regulation actually punishes states for billions they’ve already invested in environmental upgrades.
View original 480 more words
Posted: Friday, March 6, 2015 7:30 am
LOUISVILLE — What does it take to legalize casinos in Kentucky?
According to court rulings and attorney general opinions, Section 226 of the state Constitution would have to be amended. That section does not explicitly outlaw “casinos,” but forbids “lotteries” other than the state lottery. Lotteries are principally regarded as the sale of tickets and awarding of prizes to winning ticket holders.
But lotteries are also defined as “any scheme for the distribution of prizes by chance.” That was the view taken by state courts and former Attorney General Greg Stumbo when, in 2005, he wrote an opinion saying, “The case law is clear; to be a “lottery,” the winner must be chosen “purely by chance.”
Somehow, the “purely by chance” doctrine was applied to card games as well as the play-and-pray games of slot machines, roulette and dice. Poker, blackjack and baccarat players would beg to disagree, as success at those games require a high degree of skill to go with elements of chance.
In any case, amending the Constitution has become the go-to route to bring casinos to Kentucky. A bill must be introduced in the General Assembly, and at least 60 percent of each chamber — the House and the Senate — would have to vote for the bill. From there, Kentucky voters would have their say on the proposed amendment. A simple majority would make it law.
Two such attempts in the past three years have failed. In 2012, a bill supported by Gov. Steve Beshear was approved by the Democratic-controlled House but rejected by the Republican-controlled Senate, despite the co-sponsorship of Sen. Damon Thayer, who went on to become Senate majority leader. In 2014, several bills were issued in both chambers, and all died in committees.
This year’s bill calls for a maximum of six casinos in the state, no more than one in any Congressional district and only in counties of at least 85,000 in population. Its sponsor? Stumbo, now speaker of the House.
Mitch McConnell’s Love Affair with Hemp How the Kentucky senator picked a fight with the DEA and became one of Washington’s top drug policy reformers.
Last May, a shipment of 250 pounds of hemp seeds left Italy destined for Kentucky as part of a pilot project made legal by the 2013 federal farm bill. Kentucky farmers had long hoped for a crop that could fill the void left by the decline of tobacco, and many thought that industrial hemp, which is used in a vast array of products, could be that crop.
The hemp seeds cleared customs in Chicago, but when the cargo landed at the UPS wing of Louisville International Airport, the Drug Enforcement Administration seized it, arguing that importing hemp seeds required an import permit, which could take six months to process. If farmers couldn’t get those seeds into the ground by June 1, the entire first year of the hemp pilot program would be dashed.
The DEA would have succeeded in blocking the seeds from reaching Kentucky farmers and university researchers but for the efforts of the state’s agricultural commissioner, who sued the agency and, most improbably, Mitch McConnell.
McConnell—then the Senate’s minority leader—worked furiously to free the seeds from the DEA’s clutches and continued the pro-hemp drumbeat throughout 2014, as he campaigned for reelection. This year, as Senate majority leader, he’s taken a further step by co-sponsoring the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2015. While the farm bill carved out an exception to allow hemp cultivation in Kentucky, the 2015 bill would remove hemp entirely from the list of drugs strictly regulated by the Controlled Substances Act. It would, in essence, legalize hemp production in the United States.
“We are laying the groundwork for a new commodity market for Kentucky farmers,” McConnell told me. “And by exploring innovative ways to use industrial hemp to benefit a variety of Kentucky industries, the pilot programs could help boost our state’s economy and lead to future jobs. … I look forward to seeing industrial hemp prosper in the Commonwealth.”
Yes, Mitch McConnell said that. About hemp.
To grasp how McConnell—the quintessential establishment Republican—came to champion industrial hemp, you must first understand the economics and internal politics of Kentucky, as well as McConnell’s relationship to Kentucky’s junior senator, Rand Paul. It’s also helpful to know that close to $500 million worth of hemp products produced by Canada and other countries is already sold in the United States through such stores as Whole Foods. McConnell’s move also has potential ramifications beyond the marketplace, providing a credible threat to the Controlled Substances Act since it was signed into law by President Richard Nixon in 1970.
“The fact that Majority Leader McConnell is a co-sponsor of a hemp bill shows how fast the politics are changing on this issue,” said Bill Piper of the Drug Policy Alliance, a nonprofit group that favors reform. (Bill Piper should not be confused with Billy Piper, former McConnell chief of staff and current K Street lobbyist).
The story of how Mitch McConnell evolved on the hemp issue began in 2010. Rand Paul, a Tea Party favorite, was running to replace the retiring Jim Bunning in the U.S. Senate and spent much of the primary season blasting McConnell, who not only represented the establishment but also supported a different Republican candidate. The McConnell-Paul relationship changed dramatically after Paul prevailed in the primary and McConnell vigorously stepped in to support him in the general election against the Democratic nominee, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway.
The bond only grew when Paul came to the Senate in 2011. Paul encouraged McConnell to consider the hemp issue because it was favored by conservatives and Tea Party types, according to two sources familiar with those discussions. McConnell listened.
The other Kentucky Republican who played a role in McConnell’s evolution was Jamie Comer, the state’s newly minted agriculture commissioner. In August 2012, Comer held a news conference before the 49th annual Kentucky Farm Bureau Country Ham Breakfast—a big shindig on the Kentucky politics circuit—to announce that legalization of hemp in the state would be his No. 1 priority in the next legislative session. Paul and U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie, another Kentucky Republican, were there to support Comer; each later testified in support of Comer’s measure before the state Senate agriculture committee in February 2013, along with Rep. John Yarmuth, a Democrat from Louisville.
“I engaged with Jamie Comer,” Yarmuth told me. “He reached out to me. From the beginning it’s been a bipartisan thing.”
In Washington, D.C., McConnell was approached multiple times from hemp supporters back home. After the fourth such approach, the senior senator from Kentucky turned to his chief of staff, Josh Holmes, and said, “We’ve got to look into this.”
If, like the average U.S. senator, you are unfamiliar with the botany of the cannabis plant, here’s a quick primer:
For starters, hemp is sometimes referred to as marijuana’s “cousin,” which is an unhelpful metaphor because hemp and marijuana are actually the same species, Cannabis sativa. They are simply different strains, and they are cultivated and harvested in different ways.
The cannabis plant is dioecious, which means its male and female flowers grow on different plants. This is unusual: Dioecious species—including gingkoes, willows and a few others—make up only 6 percent of all flowering plants.
Hemp is produced after the male plant fertilizes the females—something that happens almost immediately once the plants flower. Marijuana, on the other hand, is produced from the unfertilized flower of the female plant. A person interested in growing marijuana wants only female plants; a plant that shows signs of male flowers is plucked immediately, before it can mature and pollinate the females around it.
Pollen contamination is one of the chief concerns of marijuana growers, legal and illegal, because as soon as a female flower becomes pollinated, she stops making her THC-rich resin and begins focusing entirely on seed production. (Hemp is defined by Kentucky law as containing less than 0.3 percent THC; unfertilized marijuana flowers could have THC levels of 20 percent or more.)
For decades, the law enforcement lobby has peddled anti-hemp talking points that just didn’t add up. During the 2013 farm bill debate, the DEA asserted that, “It can be extremely difficult to distinguish cannabis grown for industrial purposes from cannabis grown for smoking. This is especially true if law enforcement is attempting to make this determination without entering the premises on which the plants are being grown.”
James Higdon is a freelance writer based in Louisville and author of The Cornbread Mafia: A Homegrown Syndicate’s Code of Silence and the Biggest Marijuana Bust in American History. He can be reached at @jimhigdon. Full disclosure: His father, Jimmy Higdon, is a Republican state senator in the Kentucky state legislature.
Jails in Kentucky are overflowing with inmates, but you may not realize many of the inmates are there for profit
- Posted: Feb 09, 2015 3:12 PM CST Updated: Feb 09, 2015 6:00 PM CST
By Emily Mieure
Metro corrections is the largest jail in Kentucky with 1,793 beds.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Most local jails in Kentucky are overflowing with inmates, but you may not realize many of the inmates are there for profit.
The Kentucky prison population is big and many prisoners are passed around the commonwealth. There are 12 prisons operated by the Kentucky Department of Corrections across the state and many of them are at capacity — if not above it.
When asked what could be improved with regards to the prison population, Nelson County Jailer Dorcas Figg said flat out: “Well, if we had more beds.”
Figg has been working with jails for over 40 years and she said she doesn’t foresee the overcrowding problem changing.
“Because it’s not a money making business,” she said.
So instead of being in state facilities, about a third of the commonwealth’s 12,000 prisoners are sleeping in county jails.
Some wonder if that’s dangerous, but local jailers insist it’s a good thing.
“It helps the counties out a whole lot,” Figg said.
She says the Kentucky Department of Corrections started sending state inmates to local jails in the early 1980s. Since then, the conditions at county facilities have improved.
“Sometimes they couldn’t even hardly survive back then,” said Figg. “Then once the state took it over, that was a great thing because you had standards you had to meet. Back then, you didn’t have standards,” she added.
Figg’s 102-bed jail is mostly full of local inmates, but she says housing state inmates helps the budget because The Kentucky Department of Corrections pays county jails at least $31.34 per state prisoner per day. A small percentage of that goes into a jail fund.
Sometimes the state will send a prisoner to a certain county for convenience.
“I get letters from state inmates wanting to come here to make them closer to home,” Figg explained. “If I had the beds, I would take any state I could because that’s beds that are being paid for — but we don’t have the beds.”
Not having enough beds is a problem across the commonwealth, and Bullitt County Jailer Martha Knox says it’s a constant balancing act.
“It’s very frustrating,” Knox said.
While her 304-bed jail is usually at or above capacity, she has an entire wing dedicated to only housing state prisoners. Trying to keep the right amount of local and state inmates is a daily struggle, but she says making room for the state prisoners is worth the money.
“It doesn’t pay everything but it is a big incentive,” said Knox.
That money adds up because a state prisoner can stay in a local jail for up to five years.
While this seems to work well in most counties, none of it applies to Jefferson County.
Metro Corrections doesn’t house state inmates because they don’t even have enough room for local inmates.
“We take whoever the police brings us,” Metro Corrections Director Mark Bolton said. “We’re 24/7, 365. Police bring them, we’re going to take them.”
“As far as I know, we’ve never been a class C or D facility and by that I mean we don’t house state inmates here in Jefferson County,” Bolton explained. “We just don’t have the capacity to do it.”
Metro corrections is the largest jail in Kentucky with 1,793 beds. Last year, it housed an average of 1,850 inmates — so where do the extras go?
“They end up going on the floor in a temporary bed and then we get them in a bed in the order they’re brought to us when a bed is freed up,” Bolton said.
He says over the years, they’ve found ways to tackle the overcrowding issue.
“We have seen the population trend down in 2014 to about a ten-year low so that’s fairly significant progress I think,” said Bolton.
He gives partial credit to House Bill 463, which reduced penalties for some drug crimes. But he said Jefferson County’s Home Incarceration Program has also contributed to the decline in the population. At any given time, there are about 700 inmates on home incarceration — 600 of them are monitored through GPS.
“I think that is another element of technology that we’ve brought to the local arena here,” Bolton noted. “I think the judges and prosecutors appreciate that that technology is now here and I think they’re making very prudent decisions with respect to public safety.”
While some think it’s dangerous to keep certain inmates on home incarceration, Bolton says it’s a program he stands behind.
“We need to protect the public and lock people up we’re afraid of, not people that we’re mad at.”
Bolton says if he had the room, he would gladly house state inmates like other counties.
“Corrections does an incredible job moving people throughout the state based upon beds that are free in other jurisdictions,” he said.
Bolton said the population at Metro Corrections peaked near 1,650 in December, which he said he hadn’t seen in over six years.
For the last two decades the source material for chemtrails has been a mystery. Finally, the apparent ‘perfect’ element base material of chemtrails sprayed from airplanes—both government and commercial—that causes blanket clouds and welsbach reflective materials in the atmosphere, has been identified. It’s coal fly ash wastes from coal burning power plants!
In the almost 13 minute video posted below, the basic scientific analysis of coal ash identifies fly ash, which is high in aluminum oxide—about 30%. From the 9 minute mark on the timeline, important information should be noted.
Apparently, coal ash—both types—is difficult and extremely expensive to dispose of, something like a billion dollar problem per plant, according to the video. However, fly ash easily is transported away from power plants by railcars—the very mode of transportation that brings the coal to the power plant to be burned. Trucks and barges also are used in transporting it to bases for spraying.
What seems to be going on is this: Just like fluoride, which is a protoplasmic poison and toxic waste, coal fly ash has been forced into humans too. We drink fluoride in our municipal water supplies under the guise that it will protect our teeth—what a crock of malarkey!
For at least two decades, we have been breathing coal fly ash deliberately being sprayed as part of weather geoengineering.
Here’s another video that shows and talks about the extreme cold weather in the USA and melting Arctic methane as of January 8, 2015.
Commentary is made that no low pressure is allowed to build up in order to control weather in the Pacific and West Coast of the USA. Aerosol trails over California prevent low pressure from building up, which may explain why California doesn’t get rain.
There’s a map in the video with accompanying incredible information. Southern Alaska temperatures in January 2015 are in the 45s and 48. Definitely, not normal! Furthermore, there’s heavy chemtrailing going on over the Gulf of Mexico to keep the Jet Stream straight all the way to Europe. The 2013-14 brutal winter pattern is upon us again—a second winter in a row!
Please share this information with everyone you know. Send it to your members of Congress, state legislators, newspapers, your local weather forecasters—everyone. We have to save our beautiful planet Earth.
Catherine retired from researching and writing, but felt compelled to write this article.
Catherine J Frompovich (website) is a retired natural nutritionist who earned advanced degrees in Nutrition and Holistic Health Sciences, Certification in Orthomolecular Theory and Practice plus Paralegal Studies. Her work has been published in national and airline magazines since the early 1980s. Catherine authored numerous books on health issues along with co-authoring papers and monographs with physicians, nurses, and holistic healthcare professionals. She has been a consumer healthcare researcher 35 years and counting.
Originally posted on Kindred Words :
I’ve got this thing,
attached to the feathers
of my tattered, right wing;
it’s tickling and itching…
and causing me to careen;
through the air,
with everybody down there
I’ve got this weight,
that drags my feet
in reverse, towards my fate;
it’s beaconing and ordering…
that I bow down, and subjugate;
kiss the toes,
belonging to those;
who refuse to let me go
I’ve got these eyes,
tuned to a frequency
that perfectly filter the lies;
barreling and swooping…
along, at their’ sides;
nobody else knows
but I see.
I’ve got this shrapnel splinter,
burrowed deeply into my skin
through summer, spring, fall and winter;
all it takes to make a slice, is a sliver;
right above the river
bleeding all over me.
The following is a synopsis of the proposed Bills currently in House and what they mean to us.
AN ACT relating to crimes and punishments.
Amend and create various KRS sections to convert certain misdemeanors to pre-payable violations and set fines.
Feb 5-introduced in House
Thru the DIRECT LINK above can be found the newest version of the Kentucky “decrim” bill.
The highlights for the cannabis users are below:
(1) A person is guilty of possession of marijuana when he or she knowingly and unlawfully possesses marijuana.
(2) Any person who violates this section shall be fined one hundred dollars ($100) for each offense
(1) “Drug paraphernalia” means all equipment, products and materials of any kind which are used, intended for use, or designed for use in planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, harvesting, manufacturing, compounding, converting, producing, processing, preparing, testing, analyzing, packaging, repackaging, storing, containing, concealing, injecting, ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing into the human body a controlled substance in violation of this chapter. It includes but is not limited to:
(a) Kits used, intended for use, or designed for use in planting, propagating, cultivating, growing, or harvesting of any species of plant which is a controlled substance or from which a controlled substance can be derived;
(e) Scales and balances used, intended for use, or designed for use in weighing or measuring controlled substances;
(g) Separation gins and sifters used, intended for use, or designed for use in removing twigs and seeds from, or in otherwise cleaning or refining marijuana;
(h) Blenders, bowls, containers, spoons, and mixing devices used, intended for use, or designed for use in compounding controlled substances;
(i) Capsules, balloons, envelopes, and other containers used, intended for use, or designed for use in packaging small quantities of controlled substances;
(l) Objects used, intended for use, or designed for use in ingesting, inhaling, or otherwise introducing marijuana, cocaine, hashish, or hashish oil into the human body, such as: metal, wooden, acrylic, glass, stone, plastic, or ceramic pipes with or without screens, permanent screens, hashish heads, or punctured metal bowls; water pipes; carburetion tubes and devices; smoking and carburetion masks; roach clips which mean objects used to hold burning material, such as marijuana cigarettes, that have become too small or too short to be held in the hand; miniature cocaine spoons, and cocaine vials; chamber pipes; carburetor pipes; electric pipes; air-driven pipes; chillums; bongs; ice pipes or chillers.
My opinion on this bill is that it is a “ lesser of the evils” for us and that is IT. Period.
In fact I am not sure how much of a lesser evil it really is when you consider that this is not any form of legalization at all. It is just a reduction in the punishment for an illegal activity.
AN ACT relating to marijuana.
Amend KRS 218A.1422 to make the possession of two ounces of marijuana or less a violation punishable by a maximum fine of $75; amend KRS 218A.1423 to make cultivation of five marijuana plants or less a Class B misdemeanor; name the Act the Kentucky Cannabis Freedom Act.
Jan 9-introduced in Senate
Feb 3-to Judiciary (S)
Thru the DIRECT LINK above can be found the first version of the Kentucky “decrim” bill as shown below.
(1) A person is guilty of possession of marijuana when he or she knowingly and unlawfully possesses marijuana.
(2) Possession of two (2) ounces of marijuana or less shall be a violation that is punishable by a maximum fine of seventy-five dollars ($75).
(3) Possession of more than two (2) ounces of marijuana is a Class B misdemeanor, except that, KRS Chapter 532 to the contrary notwithstanding, the maximum term of incarceration shall be no greater than forty-five (45) days.
âSection 2. KRS 218A.1423 is amended to read as follows:
(1) A person is guilty of marijuana cultivation when he knowingly and unlawfully plants, cultivates, or harvests marijuana with the intent to sell or transfer it.
(2) Marijuana cultivation of six (6)
[five (5)] or more plants of marijuana is:
(a) For a first offense a Class D felony.
(b) For a second or subsequent offense a Class C felony.
(3) Marijuana cultivation of fewer than six (6)
[five (5)] plants is [:
] a Class B misdemeanor
[(a) For a first offense a Class A misdemeanor.
(b) For a second or subsequent offense a Class D felony].
(4) The planting, cultivating, or harvesting of six (6)
[five (5)] or more marijuana plants shall be prima facie evidence that the marijuana plants were planted, cultivated, or harvested for the purpose of sale or transfer.
âSection 3. This Act shall be known and may be cited as the Kentucky Cannabis Freedom Act.
My opinion on this Bill is that it would be the better of the two “decrim” Bills submitted because at least there is a “grow” clause in it as long as you are not “trafficking”. However, Marijuana still remains illegal and prohibited by law under this Statute as well. The laws are all about the “control” issue. Either way they continue to make money at our expense for growing and using a “plant”. As well as the fact that we remain criminals.
Last but not least is the :
Medical Marijuana Bill Kentucky 2015 , SB 43/LM/CI (BR 287)
AN ACT relating to medical cannabis.
Create various new sections of KRS Chapter 218A to establish a comprehensive system for medical cannabis in Kentucky, including provisions for medical verification of need, persons allowed to cultivate, use, and possess the drug, organizations allowed to assist in providing the drug, regulation by the state Department for Public Health, interaction with state and local governments, including law enforcement, with persons and entities coming within the purview of the Act, and the establishment of required reporting and review procedures; amend KRS 218A.040 to conform; name the Act the Cannabis Compassion Act.
Jan 7-introduced in Senate
Jan 13-to Licensing, Occupations, & Administrative Regulations (S)
READ AS FOLLOWS: Direct Link to Bill
For the purposes of Sections 1 to 25 of this Act, unless the context otherwise requires:
(1) “Bona fide practitioner-patient relationship” means that:
(a) A practitioner and patient have a treatment or consulting relationship, during the course of which the physician has completed an assessment of the patient’s medical history and current medical condition, including an appropriate personal physical examination;
(b) The practitioner has consulted with the patient with respect to the patient’s debilitating medical condition; and
(c) The physician is available to or offers to provide follow-up care and treatment to the patient, including but not limited to patient examinations;
(2) “Cannabis” means all parts of the plant Cannabis sp., whether growing or not; the seeds thereof; the resin extracted from any part of the plant; and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of the plant, its seeds or resin or any compound, mixture, or preparation which contains any quantity of these substances. The term “cannabis” does not include industrial hemp as defined in KRS 260.850;
(3) “Cardholder” means a qualifying patient, visiting qualifying patient, or a designated caregiver who has been issued and possesses a valid registry identification card;
In my opinion this is an all out medical marijuana bill with all the regulations, Doctors, Pharmaceutical entities as well as Dispensaries lined up in a row. Once again, Freedom is not involved here. It is regulation at its finest through all aspects of the Government. If it is regulated medical marijuana that a patient is looking for then this would be the Bill for them. For many people it may be a good thing. However, it still does not free the Cannabis plant to the general public and the Statutes of controlled substances will still be alive and well with this Bill.
This is three options that we have in Kentucky that may or most probably won’t pass this year anyway. But not one of these options repeals prohibition even on a State level and will still open up persecution of those choosing to use Cannabis which fall short of the guidelines set by the State Government even if one or more of them are passed.
I still believe the only way to get society at large out of the mouth of the prison industrial complex for using Cannabis in any form is REPEAL of all laws pertaining to the Cannabis plant!
Prohibition did not work – Neither will Legalization – It is time to REPEAL and nullify unconstitutional Statutes regarding the cultivation and use of Marijuana on a Human level!
Guest POV | Medical Marijuana
Posted: Jan 28, 2015 9:33 AM CST Updated: Jan 28, 2015 3:55 PM CST
WDRB Guest Editorial By Jaime Montalvo
I have Multiple Sclerosis. I’ve been fighting this disease for eight years.
I have muscle spasms, tremor uncontrollably, and I’m scared. Cannabis relieves these symptoms.
In Kentucky, thousands of Veterans suffer from PTSD and haven’t responded to treatment.
Sadly, too many choose suicide as a last resort for escaping their demons. I have personal combat veteran friends who testify that smoking Cannabis relieves them within seconds after waking up from horrendous nightmares.
Kentucky has the highest cancer death rate of all 50 states. You probably know someone who has had cancer. Cancer treatments also bring some of the most debilitating side effects. Twenty thousand Kentuckians a year face this diagnosis. Marijuana has been studied and proven to relieve these effects. The nausea brought about by chemotherapy is relieved within seconds of inhaling Cannabis.
The Epilepsy Foundation of Kentuckiana reports over 90,000 individuals suffer from epilepsy in our area. Like cancer treatments, medications used to manage seizures have debilitating side effects. Not every patient can tolerate the treatments, and the drugs often stop working. Cannabis oil has been heralded for decreasing certain patients’ seizures from 300 per week to zero or one.
Cannabis is helping us cope with our symptoms. Please help us by contacting your legislator at 800-372-7181 asking them to support medical marijuana legislation.
I’m Jaime Montalvo, founder of Kentuckians for Medicinal Marijuana, and that’s my point of view.
LINK TO KCHHI :
Some background on the “KCHHI” Petition.
It is important because it represents “REPEAL” of “PROHIBITION” at the State, Federal and Local levels of Government in the United States, in OUR case
If “WE, THE PEOPLE” want to regain our freedom as a people to be “self-governed” we must take this very important step to push for what WE
believe is right.
No one should be punished for growing, using as medicine or for recreational purposes and most certainly of all using “medicinal marijuana” for
OUR children’s HEALTH needs. This is NOT to say that it is alright to give to a child under 18/21 years old when NOT being used medicinally!
That having been, said NO CHILD should have to do without this God-given medicine because of Government intrusion into our lives!
I am praying that the citizens of Kentucky will examine the evidence – what we have seen so far is nothing more than Government
interference in our lives at the Statutory level – even when OUR children’s lives are at stake!
I realize that those with children in dire need are pressed to see ANY form of legislation enacted that would give their CHILD this medicine!
I can honestly say that if I were in that position I would leave the State of Kentucky for Colorado today! NOT because I like what Colorado
has accomplished! It is a mess out there – but at least my child would have what they need medically – forget everything else!
The only other alternative at this point is to try to “secretly” medicate my child and hope that I do not get caught and my CHILD be taken away
because the LAW doesn’t approve. We all know the LAW is BULLSHIT!
I started preaching REPEAL in 2010 and Mary Thomas-Spears had it figured out before me. Everyone thinks that this is not worth working on
and it is unobtainable. I say it is! If enough people will get behind the idea and we start telling our Government what we need as opposed to
letting OUR Government ‘TELL US WHAT THEY ARE GOING TO LET US DO! WE ELECT THEM! Not the other way around – however this is changing
rapidly. This is a valid reason why all those who are eligible to vote MUST do so! Regardless of the fact that the elections are, at this point a “set up” we MUST
retain the right to the voting process – so everyone make sure they register and vote, even if you feel there is no reason! At least it keeps the
freedom TO vote!
It is close to the point that our entire Country will be under total control of every aspect of OUR lives, up to and including Religion and CHILD
rearing. If Kentucky lets this happen – so goes the rest of the Country! (Check out the story :
Connecticut Girl Speaks Out After Being Forced to Undergo Chemo) – Industrialism at it’s worse in my opinion, and it is happening
everyday! So stop thinking we CAN’T and start thinking YES WE CAN put an end to the tyranny that is surrounding us and moving in on ALL of OUR freedom’s
as we speak. STAND UP AND FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHT TO BE FREE FROM PROHIBITION AND GOVERNMENT INTRUSION INTO OUR DAILY LIVES
FOR NO OTHER REASON THAN THEIR DOMINENCE OVER US!
We lost the first Civil War to the Industrialists. LET IT NOT HAPPEN AGAIN!
If you do not understand this I urge you to watch “Hell on Wheels” an AMC production which very well explains how the Industrialists took over
and forced slave labor from one entity – the Agrarian (Farming) Community into the Industrialist building of the railroads and the war effort.
Everyone was forced into leaving the family farms for the Industrial Revolution. As a result we ended up with corporate farming.
Of note: The Emancipation Proclamation which “freed the Slaves” was NOT enforced in Kentucky because Kentucky had not seceded from the Union.
It was only a strategy of War between the North and South and Kentucky “sat on the fence” Don’t take me the wrong way…Slavery was never RIGHT!
And Abe Lincoln did NOT like Slavery which has been documented historically. However, this information proves that if the Government seems to
Fight for the freedom from prohibition of your freedoms!
PLEASE FOLLOW THIS LINK AND SIGN FOR YOUR RIGHT AS A HUMAN BEING TO BE ABLE TO FARM AND USE CANNABIS! A GOD-GIVEN PLANT!
CALLIFORNIA HEMP HEALTH INITIATIVE 2012
we petition the obama administration to: Remove the Whole Cannabis Plant from Schedule 1 for Medical Research & Patient Access
Research & experience suggest medical cannabis helps with Alzheimer’s, Diabetes, epilepsy, cancer, Multiple Sclerosis, HIV, GI disorders, PTSD, eczema, Autism, arthritis, and other conditions.
Please remove the whole cannabis plant from the federal government’s banned Schedule 1 list.
Extensive research into various whole plant medicinal strains must be allowed to identify the full potential of this therapeutic plant. Research, mostly from other countries, already suggests the compounds in whole plant cannabis strains work synergistically to produce medicinal effects and help reduce side effects. Therefore, limited rescheduling of individual components for cannabinoid-based synthetic drugs alone will not work. Please allow the various strain options for research and medical access.
Published Date: Jan 05, 2015
Link to: FACEBOOK GROUP: SAFER KENTUCKY
Originally posted on U.S. Marijuana Party of Kentucky:
PUBLIC SERVICE COMMENT:
Please be aware that “Pertussis/Whooping Cough” is active in the SC KY area.
please contact your doctor right away. I have been diagnosed with this thru CDC as my Grandson has had it…I am sicker now than when I went to Dr for URI on 4th….The RX I was given at the time does not attack this Virus!!!!!!!!!!!! Do not take this lightly! I probably won’t be online as much for a few days or so – smk
UPDATE: THIS IS HOW AND WHY “PANDEMICS” GET STARTED: I called my DR as the RN from BCH told me to. Requested meds be sent to Pharmacy. Few hours later they call me back and tell me that they cant diagnose Pertussis— that I have to go Urgent Care to be tested to confirm —- at THAT time my dr. can send in antibiotics….Problem with this…
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Nov 6, 2014 9:08am
By MICHAEL FALCONE (@michaelpfalcone)
- OBAMA ADMITS ‘REPUBLICANS HAD A GOOD NIGHT‘: A day after Republicans took control of the Senate and gained seats in the House, President Obama admitted the GOP “had a good night” and “deserve credit for running good campaigns,” ABC’s ERIN DOOLEY reports. http://abcn.ws/1uy0a3M
- MITCH MCCONNELL SAYS HE WILL ‘TRUST BUT VERIFY’ HIS NEW RELATIONSHIP WITH THE PRESIDENT: Sen. Mitch McConnell said he intends to employ a “trust but verify” relationship with President Obama when he takes the helm as the new Senate majority leader, saying voters sent a clear message that both parties must govern. “The American people have spoken. They’ve given us divided government,” McConnell told reporters in Louisville yesterday. According to ABC’s JEFF ZELENY, it’s an open question how much agreement the Republican-controlled Congress and the White House will forge, given the high degree of partisan acrimony that has been festering in Washington. But McConnell listed trade agreements and corporate tax reform as two potential early areas of compromise with the president. http://abcn.ws/10oPar6
- FORGET THE BEER, OBAMA AND MCCONNELL HEAD STRAIGHT FOR THE HARD STUFF: President Obama has met one-on-one with Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell only once or twice in six years. But now, ABC’s DEVIN DWYER and MARY BRUCE report the president is ready to join the Kentucky Republican for a drink. “You know, actually, I would enjoy having some Kentucky bourbon with Mitch McConnell,” Obama told ABC’s JONATHAN KARL. “I don’t know what his preferred drink is, but, you know, my interactions with Mitch McConnell, he — you know, he has always been very straightforward with me.” http://abcn.ws/1tBgmNW
ABC’s JEFF ZELENY: Will Ted Cruz and a handful of other senators be a thorn in Mitch McConnell’s side or an ally in his new Republican majority? It’s likely a safe bet we’ll see a bit of both. But McConnell and his Republican leadership team are trying to quickly bring the new Republican class to their side to avoid anything that resembles a Cruz caucus. When McConnell talked to us yesterday in Louisville, he made clear that government shutdowns and budget showdowns won’t take place on his watch. The only way he can deliver on that promise is by keeping the freshmen senators in his corner. He suggested that the mandate from voters was on his side, saying: “The vast majority of them don’t feel that they were sent to Washington to just fight all the time.”
ABC’s SHUSHANNAH WALSHE: Compromise, it’s been the ugliest of words in Washington. But, if voters made one thing clear when voting in that Republican wave Tuesday is that they are sick of gridlock, bringing angst about so many issues–including a hatred of the way things work in Washington–to the voting booth. Yesterday, we saw some signs that maybe–just maybe–things might be different. First, Mitch McConnell stressed he has a “cordial” relationship with the president noting he heard the voters loud and clear saying when voters choose “divided government” it doesn’t mean “they don’t want us to do anything,” instead “it means they want us to look for areas of agreement.” Then the president said a bourbon summit may be on the menu, saying he would “enjoy having some Kentucky bourbon” with McConnell. Yes, these are tiny steps, but ones the American people desperately want. And if they don’t get it, many in Washington know it could be another “throw the bums out” year soon enough.
ABC’s RICK KLEIN: President Obama seemed to go out of his way to deny the 2014 elections a label, as he resisted entreaties by reporters to follow the tradition that brought us the “thumping” and the “shellacking.” It’s as if the White House would prefer that the election some said was about nothing would not even get a name. But the election actually was about big forces in American politics. It brings a new world were nouns will bother Democrats less than verbs. The election conferred few mandates, and defies snapshot takeaways. But to suggest that the election was primarily about a Republican-leaning map, or somehow was about voters who chose not to vote, risks also defying a public that was responding to policies that the president himself insisted were on the ballot.
with ABC’s KIRSTEN APPLETON
MEET 9 REPUBLICANS WHO COULD SHAKE THINGS UP IN THE NEW CONGRESS. There are a lot of new Republicans headed to Congress next year, but some members of the largest GOP wave since the Hoover administration stick out more than others. ABC’s CHRIS GOOD, JOHN PARKINSON, ARLETTE SAENZ and BEN SIEGEL take a look at some of the newly minted senators and members of Congress likely to shake things up at the Capitol. http://abcn.ws/1x6yPna
HAPPENING TODAY — MEDAL OF HONOR FOR CIVIL WAR HERO: More than 150 years after he was shot three times and later killed by Confederate forces in the Battle of Gettysburg, 1st Lt. Alonzo Cushing will be decorated with the nation’s highest military honor, ABC’s DEVIN DWYER reports. President Obama will make a rare presentation of the Medal of Honor to the Civil War veteran during a small ceremony in the Roosevelt Room with Cushing’s relatives. The award is the culmination of a 40-year effort by the family and lawmakers from Wisconsin, where Cushing was born. It required a formal congressional exemption, since Medals of Honor must be presented within 3 years of a qualifying act. The 22-year-old Cushing, a graduate of West Point, where he is now buried, commanded an Army artillery battery.
GEORGIA SENATE RACE DIVIDES ATLANTA’S RAP SCENE. The Georgia Senate race between Republican winner David Perdue and Democratic candidate Michelle Nunn split voters in the Peach State. According to ABC’s BEN SIEGEL and NOAH WEILAND, it also divided leading members of Atlanta’s rap scene. Rapper and deejay Lil Jon appeared in promotional videos for Rock the Vote’s “Turnout for What” campaign, a play on his hit song, “Turn Down for What.” On Election Day, he flew from Las Vegas to Georgia to vote after not receiving an absentee ballot in the mail. He also retweeted a message from the Nunn campaign. Meanwhile, rapper Waka Flocka Flame was spotted at a Perdue victory party at Atlanta’s Buckhead Hotel. http://abcn.ws/1x9EXfn
HOW FEMALE CANDIDATES FARED IN THE MIDTERMS. With the results of the midterm elections nearly settled, one thing is clear: a record number of women will serve in the incoming Congress. But ABC’s ALANA ABRAMSON reports it’s unclear how high that number will actually be. The total number of women in Congress will increase, to 100-103 at the most – a maximum of four additional seats. Before the midterm elections, there were 99 women serving in the 113th Congress – twenty senators and 79 members of the House. The number of women senators is slated to remain at 20, unless Louisiana’s Mary Landrieu defeats Bill Cassidy in the runoff election next month. In the House, 81 female candidates have won, with two races still too close to call. http://abcn.ws/1uxHDE2
OBAMA’S SHORT LIST FOR NEXT ATTORNEY GENERAL JUST GOT SHORTER. The coming Republican takeover of the U.S. Senate means President Obama now has an even shorter list of candidates to replace outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder. ABC’s MIKE LEVINE reports that political concerns have already kept one qualified contender from serious consideration, sources told ABC News. “President Obama said at a press conference he is “looking at” a “number of outstanding candidates,” and he is “confident” that his nominee “will get confirmed by the Senate.” But for that to happen, the president’s pick “has to be somebody who is not compromised,” the White House source said. The source was referring to Alejandro Mayorkas, the number two at the Department of Homeland Security whose name has surfaced as a potential contender even as he remains in the crosshairs of a lingering internal probe into complaints of alleged impropriety years earlier. http://abcn.ws/1shK4oz
LESSONS FROM THE LOSERS: 5 BIG POLITICAL DON’TS OF THE 2014 MIDTERM ELECTIONS. Republicans are set to march into a new session of Congress with the Senate majority well in hand. But despite the outcome, candidates on both sides of the partisan divide made mistakes. ABC’s NOAH WEILAND lists the biggest campaign “don’ts” from this election cycle. http://abcn.ws/1uxWfUo
9,000 AFGHAN SECURITY FORCES KILLED IN COMBAT DURING LAST TWO YEARS. ABC’s LUIS MARTINEZ reports almost 9,000 Afghan Army soldiers and policemen have been killed in fighting with the Taliban as they have assumed the lead for security in Afghanistan in the last two years. Overall the Afghan security forces “are winning” in their fight against the Taliban, Lieutenant Gen. Joseph Anderson said, but noted the casualty rate is “not sustainable.” http://abcn.ws/1EjBeyb
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
SUPREME COURT HEARS FISHY TALE. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court heard a “fish tale” about a fisherman who allegedly got caught at sea with red grouper that measured smaller than commercial fishing regulations allowed. Instead of facing authorities, he threw the fish overboard and was prosecuted under a law for destructing a “record, document or tangible object” with the intent to obstruct a federal investigation. The issue before the court is whether the law was meant to cover an act of throwing fish overboard, ABC’s ARIANE DE VOGUE reports. http://abcn.ws/1x7GzVL
@llerer: Can Hillary Clinton Save the Democrats? http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2014-11-06/can-hillary-clinton-save-the-democrats … via @bpolitics
@PounderFile: WaPo: Some Senate Democrats won’t say whether they’ll back Harry Reid http://wapo.st/1qrkwVj
@HuffPostPol: Here’s the Democratic route back to Senate control in 2016 http://huff.to/1qrmGnS
@ezraklein: The most consequential gains Republicans made in 2014 might actually be in state legisltures: http://bit.ly/1zy1Ewa
Originally posted on U.S. Marijuana Party of Kentucky:
In the last few years the corporate agenda has led the legalization movement of cannabis right thru the processes of capitalism, all nice, and tied up with a pretty bow on the “bag”.
There is a serious problem with this.
First of all I am not anti-capitalist. In fact it would be my pleasure to be able to walk in my local town drug store and purchase an ounce of Herb and pay the taxes on that purchase as well.
I would probably be the first person in line in Cave City when the store opened if that were possible. I would also love to see a Cannabis Café on the corner of Broadway and First Street.
That being said I can compare the legalization of corporate cannabis with the “Wet” vote that just passed in my town.
Before the town went “wet” there were a couple/few people around the…
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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
All Saints’ Day
Painting by Fra Angelico
1 November (Western Christianity)
Sunday after Pentecost (Eastern Christianity)
All Saints’ Day, also known as All Hallows, Solemnity of All Saints, or Feast of All Saints is a solemnity celebrated on 1 November by the Catholic Church and several Protestant denominations, and on the first Sunday after Pentecost in Eastern Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy, in honour of all the saints, known and unknown. The liturgical celebration begins at Vespers on the evening of 31 October and ends at the close of 1 November. It is thus the day before All Souls’ Day.
Hallowmas is another term for the feast, and was used by Shakespeare in this sense. However, a few recent writers have applied this term to the three days from 31 October to 2 November inclusive, as a synonym for the triduum of Hallowtide.
In Catholic theology, the day commemorates all those who have attained the beatific vision in Heaven. It is a national holiday in many historically Catholic countries. In the Catholic Church and many Anglican churches, the next day specifically commemorates the departed faithful who have not yet been purified and reached Heaven. Christians who celebrate All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day do so in the fundamental belief that there is a prayerful spiritual bond between those in heaven (the “Church triumphant“), and the living (the “Church militant“). Other Christian traditions define, remember and respond to the saints in different ways; for example, in the Methodist Church, the word “saints” refers to all Christians and therefore, on All Saints’ Day, the Church Universal, as well as the deceased members of a local congregation, are honored and remembered.
All Saints’ Day may originate in the ancient Roman observation of 13 May, the Feast of the Lemures, in which malevolent and restless spirits of the dead were propitiated. Liturgiologists base the idea that this Lemuria festival was the origin of that of All Saints on their identical dates and on the similar theme of “all the dead”.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
This article is about the observance. For other uses, see Halloween (disambiguation).
“All Hallows’ Eve” redirects here. For other uses, see All Hallows’ Eve (disambiguation).
All Hallows’ Eve
All Saints’ Eve
First day of Allhallowtide
31 October 2015
Halloween or Hallowe’en (/ˌhæləˈwiːn, –oʊˈiːn, ˌhɑːl–/) is a yearly celebration observed in a number of countries on 31 October, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows’ Day. It initiates the triduum of Allhallowtide, the time in the liturgical year dedicated to remembering the dead, including saints (hallows), martyrs, and all the faithful departed believers. Within Allhallowtide, the traditional focus of All Hallows’ Eve revolves around the theme of using “humor and ridicule to confront the power of death.”
According to many scholars, All Hallows’ Eve is a Christianized feast initially influenced by Celtic harvest festivals, with possible pagan roots, particularly the Gaelic Samhain. Other scholars maintain that it originated independently of Samhain and has solely Christian roots.